Business / Technology

China's lead in Industry 4. 0

(Xinhua) Updated: 2015-04-02 10:52

BERLIN - The first paper of a research project revealed on Monday that China has now far outstripped the United States and Germany when it comes to patents for basic technologies of Industry 4.0.

According to the German Fraunhofer Institute of Labor Economics and Organization (IAO), part of its China TechWatch research project involves analyzing developments in Chinese technology.

As the IAO summed up, China is an attractive market for solution providers of Industry 4.0, a term for the technological concepts of cyber-physical systems.

Since 2013, Chinese inventors have filed over 2,500 patents in this field, putting China way ahead of the United States (1,065 patents) and Germany (441), as more than 300 Chinese companies and research institutes have applied patents on Industry 4.0 technologies.

China is not only ahead in terms of the number of patents, but has also developed highly innovative inventions, said the paper.

As it showed, China is moving towards advanced technological fields, from a centralized control system to intelligent, decentralized and self-adaptive control.

In March of this year, the Chinese government announced a new strategic program "Made in China 2025," aimed specifically at promoting Industry 4.0 technologies.

This should grab the attention of the local industry in Germany,

said Fraunhofer IAO, adding that China has been working hard on the technologies that underpin the fourth industrial revolution for years now.

The challenge facing Western companies is to identify high-quality inventions without spending undue time and money, as Fraunhofer IAO pointed out.

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