Some 80 members of the academia, business community and policy-making circles yesterday attended a conference in Beijing, marking the establishment of a working group to set standards on humanoid robotics in China.
The meeting has drawn a number of distinguished members, such as Xiang Diyun, a deputy general manager of Xiaomi Group’s robotics affiliate, and Ji Chao, a robotic product supervisor of the Chinese AI giant iFlytek (科大讯飞).
They explored topics pertinent to humanoid robotics, covering aspects like motion control, perception and test of the contraption.
Humanoid robotics in China, albeit nascent, has been commanding lots of attention, thanks to the rise of dozens of startups involved in what has become a humanoid frenzy.
Efforts should be made to craft standards on humanoid robot, said Lu Yuepin, an official overseeing smart manufacturing at China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, at the conference.
Leading firms in this space ought to play a key role in promulgating standards across the industry and pushing for innovation throughout the industrial chain, Lu added.
As China plunges headlong into a global humanoid race, industry observers have been calling on domestic practitioners to take part in the formulation of standards on humanoids worldwide.
Part of the motivation is to avoid being “sidelined” in the discussion on whose standards have more clout.
During his speech, Gao Shaoxiong, an official with Beijing’s Municipal Economic and Information Bureau, a local economic planner, said the Chinese capital has positioned humanoid robotics as a key sector with strategic importance.
As the city explores the frontier of this emerging segment, it seeks to build its own humanoid robotic hub into a template, setting examples for others to follow, said Gao.
In a sign of China’s ambitions in this field, the country’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology stated earlier this year that humanoid robotics puts together AI, advanced manufacturing and new materials science.
This blend of technologies is well positioned to become the next big thing after computer, smartphone and new energy vehicle, disrupting the way people live and work, said the ministry.