The internet of things (IoT) has evolved into a key part of new types of infrastructure along with the rapid digitalization of society and the economy.
According to the Internet of Things New Infrastructure Development Three-Year Action Plan (2021-23) jointly issued by eight government departments, major cities in China are scheduled to initially complete IoT new infrastructure construction, creating more than 2 billion IoT connections by the end of 2023.
Insiders said that as China improves IoT-related policies and technologies, the country's IoT industry is expected to welcome sustainable, highly-efficient and orderly development.
Development of the IoT was included in China's 12th Five-Year Plan (2011-15) in 2011, after which series of policies were made and released by relevant departments to support the industry through investment and special action plans. However, there are still problems in core technologies and industrial ecology.
In response to these weaknesses, the newly-released action plan clarifies 12 major goals, including breakthroughs in innovation capacity, improvement in key technologies and competitiveness, and industrialization of integrated technology of IoT and 5G, artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain.
The action plan says that by the end of 2023, China should make breakthroughs in key generic technologies that have restricted IoT development, foster demonstrative IoT construction and operation projects, promote a duplicable and sustainable operation mode, develop industrial applications with outstanding supporting and comprehensive effectiveness, and build a complete IoT standard and security guarantee system.
The action plan also calls for improving coordinated governance and talent cultivation systems and financial support, which will ensure stable development of the IoT industry.
Statistics released by the China Industrial Development Institute show that China's IoT market scale reached 1.66 trillion yuan ($259.79 billion) in 2020 and is expected to exceed 2.12 trillion yuan by the end of 2022. With policy support, China's IoT industry will maintain rapid development.
IoT plays a key role in smart city construction by connecting everything together. [Photo/IC]
Support smart city construction
Smart city construction is an inevitable step in global urbanization. IoT technology will play a key role in connecting everything in the world's cities.
To promote smart city and digital rural construction, the action plan says China should push forward renovation and upgrading of traditional infrastructure in traffic, energy, municipal engineering and health fields.
The action plan also includes realizing digitalization and virtualization in cities and building a new mode of urban public governance by including sensory terminals in planning and construction of public infrastructure, and launching comprehensive management and data sharing platforms.
A 5G- and IoT-based flood forecasting and early warning system played a key role in combating the flooding caused by Typhoon In-Fa this July in Siyang county, Suqian in East China's Jiangsu province.
The front-end of the system is equipped with 5G and IoT data collection sensors that can send precipitation, water stage and water accumulation information to flood control personnel, allowing them to respond in an efficient and timely fashion.
A technician inspects vegetables at the Luculent Agricultural Science Park in Binhai, Jiangsu province on Dec 1, 2020. With a total investment of 450 million yuan, the park was jointly planned, designed and built by Luculent Smart Technologies Co., Ltd. and Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd. Based on 5G, IoT and VR technologies, the park intends to evolve into an agricultural high-tech demonstration zone in China. [Photo/IC]
Large innovation potential
In addition to supporting smart city construction, the IoT can also work together with other technologies like 5G and AI to provide smart living solutions in daily life.
Compared to previous industrial development guiding documents, the new action plan highlights the development of smart cities, traffic and homes. It says self-developed innovative technology-based products and duplicable industrial solutions should be developed.
The home appliance maker Midea held a conference focusing on intelligentization this October, at which IoT-based smart home features were a major attraction.
Wang Yueming, who is in charge of Midea's IoT software development, said the company has developed a home experience based on virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), AI and home appliances that can create innovative interactive experiences in the comfort of one's home.
Together with emerging technologies like 5G, IoT will drive the birth of new products and services that will improve people's lives. [Photo/IC]
IoT technology can also support monitoring, access control and smoke alarm systems to keep homes safe.
Emerging technologies are also being used to improve traffic conditions and resource utilization by connecting people, vehicles and roads in new ways.
Driven by preferential policies and technological experience, IoT has great innovative potential and will contribute to the development of new products and services. The IoT industry is welcoming rapid and sustainable development.
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