Here’s How China Wins the Future of Tech

A glimpse into China Standards 2035.

If the Pandemic of 2020 is a global reset for tech startups, supply chains, small businesses and innovation broadly speaking, it also heralds a new opportunity for China to make headway against the U.S. in the cold tech war.

In April 2020, we got word of a new plan by China called China Standards 2035. China is set to release a new plan with the aim of influencing how the next generation of technologies, from telecommunications to artificial intelligence, will work.

Luckin may have been a fraud in its American IPO, Huawei has been restricted and has slowed down in smartphone sales in 2020, but China is still the heir apparent for AI startups and how China’s tech dynasty of Huwei, Alibaba, ByteDance, Baidu and Tencent (HAWBBT) becomes more dominant than America’s Microsoft, Apple, Google, Amazon and Facebook (MAGAF). This is in process, it is happening.

While U.S. regulators try to halt the power of Chinese state companies on their turf, the cold tech war is ramping up below the surface of the pandemic situation in 2020.

Standards will define how some technologies work and their interoperability around the world. 5G is coming and AI is in the midst of being regulated. China will have challenges dislodging the dominance of Europe and the U.S, especially after the ill will regarding the Wuhan virus and the lack of data transparency in how it was dealt with and definitely not contained.

In an era of economic decline, cybersecurity and IoT will become even more prevalent, allowing tech monopolies to get stronger and covert information warfare to ramp up.

  • “China Standards 2035” is set to be released this year after two years of planning.
  • It’s an ambitious 15-year blueprint that will lay out its plans to set the global standards for the next-generation of technologies. China, for instance, already leads in facial recognition AI startups.
  • Experts said it is widely seen as the next step, following the “Made In China 2025″ global manufacturing plan.

While Chinese-led Zoom is now on a watch list for technologies that aren’t safe, TikTok has also been under greater scrutiny, an app by the rising consumer-AI giant of China called ByteDance, oft covered here at the Last Futurist. In fact, Baidu’s Apollo program has beat Google’s Waymo One to a national trial of self-driving autonomous taxis.

While the U.S. is ahead in research and AI engineering talent, China is showing its AI focused companies demonstrate a superior AI startup scene and venture capital organization, where ‘BAT’ companies and now ByteDance are demonstrating how China might win the AI arms race of the 21st century.

  • In March, Beijing released a document which translates as “The Main Points of National Standardization Work in 2020.”
  • The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) pursues a decades-long grand strategy to develop and capture global networks and platforms – with them to define global standards.
  • As China has in recent times gained more influence in the UN and WHO, so too will it influence and in the end lead AI regulations and global standards of 5G and other systems. In fact, it’s launching the first national digital currency later in 2020.

China owns the future because of its strategic vision and the innovation machine it is building. For example it knows that whoever dominates AI and biotechnology rules the future. China is building a “new generation of information technology and biotechnology standard system.” Beijing under the Chinese Community Party is in fact very ambitious to lead the way in technology and has a fair chance of doing it by 2040, if not earlier.

China’s pillars of its coming technological dynasty are no state secret. They are Internet of Things, cloud computing, big data, 5G and artificial intelligence (AI). Alibaba recently pledged to focus on Cloud Computing with billions in new funding. This will enable it to catch up with the global leaders AWS and Azure (part of America’s MAGAF) respectively.

Andrew Polk, partner at Beijing-based research and consultancy firm Trivium China, says ″(China Standards 2035) is a combination of domestic exigencies and the need to improve their own economic performance and efficiency and their desire to set the standards, literally and figuratively, abroad.”

While Donald Trump talks about bringing back manufacturing jobs and saving the Oil sector, China is future-focused with a long-term plan. Given how badly America is dealing with the pandemic economically, China has fuel to set its dominance in motion.

China is planning how to lead the world into the 21st century of AI with more patents for example in blockchain, than everyone else combined. China Standards 2035 gives the country a new impetus but over the past few years, the influence of the world’s second-largest economy has already been innovation centric and made tremendous progress, in spite of its less than stellar human rights record, controversy and poor global diplomatic relations.

5G refers to next-generation mobile networks that are seen as critical in supporting future infrastructure. Huawei is still expected to dominate its implementation. ByteDance is expected to out-grow Facebook in the next 5-10 years while Baidu and Alibaba could catch the Cloud leaders of America by 2030.

While multiple Chinese companies appear to be clones of American ones, a new breed of companies like ByteDance, Meituan and Ant Financial are new business models that the U.S. cannot replicate or compete with.

China will develop more global leaders in the 2020 to 2030 period, than will America. Thus in the 2040s (post 2035) China will likely become the dominant technology leaders of the planet. So something like China Standards 2035 will be the beginning of that.

The pandemic could be seen as part of China’s strategic plan to win the 21st century econmically and technologically. It will devise many plans of action such as the Belt and Road Initiative (BTI). The BRI is also seen as one way China is able to spread its standards and influence.

Launched in 2013, the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is a massive infrastructure project that seeks to link more than 60 countries from Asia through to Africa and Europe in a complex network of roads, rails and ports.

The Wuhan virus, by design or luck, is a convenient method China can use to slow the rest of the world down (especially America) to increase its superiority in innovation and developing technology companies. China is already winning the AI revolution and this means it will likely have the upper hand in the biotechnology revolution even though it appears decades behind.

Whether it’s 5G, AI, EdTech, HealthTech, FinTech or how business leverages the future of technology, China is now in the conversation, if not leading it. It’s led the mobile wave of E-commerce, and it will lead new consumer movements.

Can it win the race to the neural interface (the device after mobile)? Can it succeed in Space Tech, and new verticals? It’s highly likely. This is because it’s nationalizing the ambition to be the AI leader of all things. While the CCP is authoritarian to a fault, its machinery of innovation should not be underestimated.

Beijing completed two years of planning for China Standards 2035 at the beginning of March. The final strategy document is projected to be issued this year. China will “manufacture” companies such as Huawei and ByteDance, in other domains as needed. Just watch them do it.

This is important for humanity’s ability to survive the challenges of the future, because it’s highly likely the United States won’t forever remain a global super-power.

Ultimately China’s ability to rejuvenate itself following the pandemic will likely be superior and more strategic than the rest of the planet. It will in part have China Standards 2035 to thank for this.

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