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China unveils 5-year plan to boost virtual reality

The action plan, which will run from 2022 to 2026, aims to further integrate virtual reality with industrial applications


China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, together with other four Chinese government agencies, developed a five-year action plan targeting the shipment of 25 million virtual reality (VR) devices by 2026, Chinese newspaper Global Times reported.

The initiative is part of a broader ambition to boost China’s economic and industrial development.

The action plan, which will run from 2022 to 2026, aims to further integrate VR with industrial applications. By 2026, the total scale of China’s virtual reality industry, including related hardware, software, and applications, is forecast to exceed CNY 350 billion ($48.56 billion), according to the plan.

The Chinese authorities expect that the plan could achieve major breakthroughs in key technologies such as three-dimensionality and also seeks the increasing adoption of VR technology for the promotion of economic development in several sectors.

The major targets of the government-backed plan include significantly strengthening innovation ability, continuously improving the industrial ecosystem, and achieving strong results in integrating VR technology with current applications.

The plan also aims to cultivate 100 “backbone enterprises” with strong innovation capabilities in the VR sector and to build 10 public service platforms for the industry by 2026.

The plan outlines five key tasks: promoting the integration of key technologies, improving the industrial chain supply capacity, accelerating the development of more application scenarios, strengthening the construction of public service platforms and establishing a standardized system.

Additionally, the plan also proposes three specialized projects with detailed future development plans: integrating and innovating key projects such as network transmission technology; improving the whole industrial supply chain with specific directions for key facilities and technologies and promoting the application scenarios in key industries.

The market for VR devices in China is expected to reach CNY48 billion while the market for VR content is expected to reach CNY83.3 billion by 2025, according to a report by Founder Securities.

Spending on VR and AR in China is forecast to reach $13.1 billion by 2026, up from $2.1 billion last year, according to a previous report by tech consultancy firm IDC.

China’s market for AR and VR is expected to expand at a CAGR of 43.8% during the 2022-2026 period, according to IDC.

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