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China’s metaverse – What lies ahead?

State-backed Chinese industry body racks up fresh companies to build their metaverse.

The industry body in China that’s been tasked with developing the country’s own metaverse has added a new set of companies as it strives to get ahead in the metaverse race.

The state-backed China Mobile Communications Association’s metaverse committee has added an additional 17 companies. This brings a total of 112 companies or individuals within the industry body – that’s a serious amount of manpower at play.

The newest batch of companies includes Inly Media – an advertising company which provides media agency services, data strategy, consulting, guerilla advertising, Internet public relations, and brand management – and Beijing Topnew Info & Tech – who provide data centres, cloud services, and software development. 

While it’s currently unknown as to what exact form this combined team’s metaverse will take, all the participants are described as using technologies such as augmented and virtual reality and feature the concept of users playing, communicating and living in a virtual world.

Regulating China’s metaverse

Head of the China Mobile Communications Association’s metaverse industry committee, Du Zhengping told Reuters:

“Traditional Chinese internet businesses developed first and were then regulated. Industries like the metaverse will be regulated as they are built.”

The intention here is that rather than benefit later from independent ingenuity (and reign in when required) – as China did with their internet uptake – to guide and nurture (and keep tabs on) a shared metaverse project from its very beginning.

The China Mobile Communications Association is backed by some of the county’s biggest tech firms such as telecoms operator China Mobile and Huawei. It is also registered with the country’s foreign affairs ministry. Since being established in October, the committee has been tasked with developing technology and standards around the metaverse to create a single shared vision and associated learns.

And as with similar big names in the U.S., Chinese tech giants such as Tencent and Alibaba are all exploring ways to develop metaverse applications.

One potential hurdle they’ll have to overcome however, is their inability to incorporate cryptocurrency into their worlds as – currently – Chinese authorities have branded the creation and adoption of crypto a strict legal no-go zone.

Written By

Isa Muhammad is a writer and video game journalist covering many aspects of entertainment media including the film industry. He enjoys reading philosophy, autobiographies and staying informed. If he's not reading, playing video games or catching up on his favourite TV series, then he's probably writing about them.

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