Chinese Gadgets Signal New Era of Innovation22 August, 2014 / Articles
One dreams of making bathroom scales offering fitness advice. Another hopes to sell devices that track and analyze bat swings to players on Major League Baseball teams. A third wants to make bracelets for tracking missing children.
In laboratories and startups across China, tinkerers with big dreams are pushing what many in the industry see as a potential new wave of Chinese innovation. They see smart gadgets—wearables and other devices that connect to the Internet or interact with users—as an opportunity to create a Chinese-designed product for a global audience.
To get there, they are tapping China’s massive electronics supply chain, which is building increasingly sophisticated products ranging from iPads to Xboxes. Proximity to that supply chain lets inventors tweak their pet projects at the factory itself, giving them greater control over the finished product.
“China will be one of the most advanced research-and-development centers for the new convergence between hardware and software, given it’s the world’s factory,” said Annabelle Long, a director of venture capital for Bertelsmann Group.