The development of industrial Internet will pick up pace driven by 5G networks and artificial intelligence (AI), facilitating the acceleration of transformation and upgrading in various industries, said Pony Ma, chairman and chief executive officer of Tencent Holdings Ltd., at the 2019 China (Shenzhen) IT Summit yesterday.
Shenzhen Mayor Chen Rugui delivers a speech.
Pony Ma speaks at the summit.
Themed “IT New Future: 5G and Artificial Intelligence,” the summit has brought together a large number of technology leaders and elites from all walks of life to explore such hot topics as the future of telecommunications, industrial Internet, smart city and fintech.
Industrial Internet refers to the integration and linking of big data, analytical tools and wireless networks with physical and industrial equipment.
“Looking back on the past few years, we put forward ‘Internet +’ in 2015 and began to talk about ‘digital economy’ in 2017. We mentioned ‘Digital China’ last year and proposed ‘industrial Internet’ and ‘intelligent +’ for the first time this year,” Ma said in a keynote speech delivered at the summit.
“Although different concepts are put forward each year, the goal is the same: We hope to seize the opportunities that information technology (IT) can bring in the new round of global technological and industrial revolution, and promote digital upgrading in various industries,” Ma said.
Ma said 5G networks and AI will complement each other in the future, as the former can help more AI applications become available while AI can make 5G networks more flexible and efficient for people to use. Edge computing, in particular, will become more important.
Ma said China has more than 800 million netizens at present. Ninety-eight percent of them use mobile Internet and the number of mobile payment users is approximately 600 million.
“We believe that traditional Chinese industries need to make full use of our leading edge and innovative ability in the field of mobile Internet to make an effective connection between consumers and suppliers,” Ma said.
Ma also said that traditional industries and the Internet are merging into a community of shared destiny, and technological innovation and cyber security are the two cornerstones of this community.
According to Ma, Tencent currently has seven safety laboratories, and has set up an artificial intelligence laboratory, quantum laboratory and robotic laboratory to conduct cutting-edge research.
Ma said industrial Internet is now in the ascendant. “China’s demographic dividend is gradually disappearing, but its innovation dividend has great potential. Over the past 40 years, we have laid a good industrial foundation, trained many high-quality talents and created good conditions for industrial upgrading in all walks of life.”
Also at the summit, the Shenzhen IT Industrial Development Report was released. According to the report, Shenzhen’s IT industry generated 2.1 trillion yuan (US$308 billion) of output value in 2018, accounting for nearly 10 percent of the global total, which amounted to US$3.65 trillion last year.
The China (Shenzhen) IT Summit, hailed as the bellwether of the IT industry, is an annual event in Shenzhen and has been held for 11 consecutive years.
Guests take a group photo before the summit starts.