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IoT wave defining Wuxi as industry leader

China Daily Updated:2023-10-20



Students display robots at a previous expo. CHINA DAILY

Hosting global showcase boosts city's international image

From revolutionizing transportation to optimizing energy usage, the internet of things wave is transforming Wuxi, in the Yangtze River Delta of East China's Jiangsu province, from a city with limited knowledge about IoT to one of the nation's acknowledged leaders in the industry.

Over the past 14 years, en route to earning recognition as "IoT Capital of China", Wuxi has built a comprehensive ecosystem that incorporates sensors, perceptual devices, smart hardware, communication and application services.

The annual World Internet of Things Exposition, which has been held since 2010, opens today and runs through Monday at the Wuxi Taihu International Expo Centre. As one of the most influential IoT events in the world, it draws industry leaders, decision-makers, innovators, experts and entrepreneurs from both domestic and international backgrounds. Participants are to share knowledge and exchange ideas on cutting-edge technologies, exhibit their latest solutions and advancements and explore potential business opportunities and investments.

The expo has fostered a global network and positive interactions with international peers, attracting 54 well-known overseas companies, including Microsoft from the United States, Siemens from Germany and Fanuc from Japan.

Marc Tarrago, director of IOT Solutions World Congress, a leading conference and exhibition of the industry headquartered in Barcelona, Spain, is attending the expo and is expected to sign a cooperation agreement. Additionally, authoritative organizations like the China Center for Information Industry Development, China Electronics Standardization Institute, China Institute of Electronics and China Institute of Communications, as well as leading enterprises including Huawei, Baidu, and CETHIK, are to participate.

Spanning over 50,000 square meters at the Wuxi Taihu International Expo Centre, the event focuses on IoT-based infrastructure, smart sensors, industrial IoT, the internet of vehicles and intelligent connected vehicles. This year, a smart sensor pavilion has been set up for the first time.

Some emerging industries are also represented, including satellite IoT, general artificial intelligence, special-purpose robotics, silicon-based optoelectronics, artificial intelligence of things, new storage, edge computing, augmented reality and digital twinning.

Professional conferences are being held in conjunction with the expo, with the WIoT Wuxi Summit serving as the central conference. Government officials as well as academic and industry experts are scheduled to deliver keynote speeches on topics related to IoT policies, digital transformation and IoT in the manufacturing industry, and IoT and AI.

The release of comprehensive documents such as the "2023 China Industrial Development White Paper on IoT", "White Paper on IoT Technology Innovation System (2023 Edition)" and others covering typical cases of industry development empowered by the IoT are other highlights of the expo, as are forums and subforums on smart sensors, connected vehicles, and the industrial internet of things.

Concurrently, several high-profile international conferences and events, such as the IEEE International Conference on Communications, EU-China Hybrid B2B Matchmaking Session and the International Summit on Intelligent Manufacturing will take place, and more than 30 industry chain and supply chain matching activities will facilitate collaboration between industry, academia, research and application.

Since its inception in 2010, the WIoT has welcomed over 1.1 million visitors from more than 50 countries and regions and witnessed the signing of cooperation agreements on nearly 1,000 projects.

Wuxi has achieved remarkable milestones in the IoT industry since being designated as a pilot city for the first national sensor network demonstration zone in 2009. It became the first prefecture-level city in China to achieve complete narrowband IoT coverage, surpass 10 million IoT connections and establish a high-standard full-fiber network. Furthermore, it stands as a pioneer in connected vehicles, serving as one of the world's largest city-level application demonstration venues for this technology.

Currently, Wuxi features a complete IoT industrial chain with more than 3,000 enterprises engaged in sensors, sensing equipment, smart hardware, information communication and application services, and operating revenue of the city's IoT industry amounted to 401.1 billion yuan ($54.8 billion) in 2022, up 16.2 percent year-on-year and accounting for nearly 50 percent of the total in Jiangsu province.

Research by CCID Consulting showed Wuxi's model for IoT development entails establishment of cutting-edge laboratories, state-of-the-art science and technology parks, and robust industrial bases.

By strategically consolidating valuable scientific research resources, the model fosters seamless integration of the IoT with various industries while nurturing and amplifying core industries that share a close nexus with the IoT sector, including integrated circuits, cloud computing and big data.