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Qingdao's VR progress displayed at tech show

By Song Mengxing | (China Daily) | 2018-10-22

Leaders of Qingdao saw the 2018 World Virtual Reality Innovation Conference last month as a good opportunity to promote the growth of the city's own VR industry.

The event, which was held in Qingdao's Laoshan district from Sept 27 to 29, comprised a main forum, 14 themed forums, a business matchmaking activity, a VR innovation and entrepreneurship competition and expositions of VR products and solutions.

More than 300 business leaders, experts and scholars from 22 countries and regions such as the United States, France and Russia attended the event, which also attracted 1,000-plus foreign and domestic companies including Huawei, Microsoft and Intel.

Attendees at the conference learned the status quo, trends, applications and future influence of the VR industry from speeches delivered by speakers including Zhao Qinping, president of the Industry of Virtual Reality Alliance, and Jiang Bin, president of high-precision components and smart hardware maker Goertek.

They also discussed technological breakthroughs, industry-university-research cooperation and interactive experiences related to the sector.

Jiang Duntao, Party chief of Laoshan district in Qingdao, introduced the development of the VR industry in Laoshan and said in a speech that VR-plus will push innovative development in many industries and the VR era will result in win-win development in various sectors.

At the Qingdao VR International Exhibition Laval Virtual Asia, part of the event, 132 noted companies displayed their technologies and products. The exhibition showcased the applications of VR technologies and the sector's development trends.

The VR industry is among Laoshan's high-end emerging sectors that are growing rapidly. In May 2016, the district proposed a strategic plan to boost the industry and it has attracted leading scientific institutions and companies from China and abroad to establish operations there, according to local oficials.

Laoshan is now home to many internationally renowned companies such as Haier and Hisense, officials said, adding that 253 high-tech companies have also settled in the district. The companies are involved in fields such as electronic communication and software are eye-catching.

Since the district was approved to build a national VR high-tech industrialization center in 2017, it has released a number of support policies for the industry and ofered measures to help attract high-level professionals and businesses.

A virtual reality and augmented reality technology and application laboratory was launched in Laoshan last year and is jointly operated by institutions and companies including Beihang University and Goertek. The lab will further help Qingdao to build up scientific and technological competitiveness in the VR field, according to the Qingdao government's website.