Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holdings Ltd. has officially entered the Virtual Reality (VR) field with an announcement of its own VR research lab and ambitious plans to become an industry leader.
China’s Shanda Group and Shenzhen-listed photo-electric component manufacturer Crystal-Optech have invested US$15 million in Lumus Ltd., an Israeli developer of transparent near-to-eye displays for augmented reality (AR) and smart eyewear, according to an announcement.
Sequoia Capital, Matrix Partners, 500 Startups, virtual reality (VR) firm HTC and dozens of other investors have formed a Virtual Reality Venture Capital Alliance, aiming to invest US$10 billion in the VR and augmented reality (AR) sectors globally.
Worldwide revenues for the augmented reality and virtual reality (AR/VR) market will grow from US$5.2 billion in 2016 to more than US$162 billion in 2020, according to a new report released by the International Data Corporation (IDC).
STX Entertainment, a Hollywood film studio and distributor with backings from private equity investors and Tencent Holdings Ltd., is expanding into virtual reality (VR) with the acquisition of U.S. VR content producer, Surreal.
Chinese Internet search engine giant Baidu Inc. has decided to end a food-delivering drone project to focus on artificial intelligence, according to remarks made by a company executive in Beijing reported by Chinese media.
The year of 2020 will be the tipping point for virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR) and mixed reality (MR) to capture two thirds of consumers’ leisure time, while the industry will reach US$150 billion by 2022, according to a report issued by BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research.
Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. has led a US$18 million financing round in Israeli augmented reality (AR) company Infinity AR, taking a 22% stake in the company.
Tencent Holdings Ltd. has established a strategic partnership with Qualcomm Incorporated to create virtual and augmented reality-based immersive mobile user experiences in gaming and entertainment, with the launch of a joint innovation center.
Taiwanese original design manufacturer Wistron Corporation has launched a US$20 million venture capital fund with Silicon Valley-based Fenox Venture Capital to invest in top technology companies around the world.
Last year, China-based investors participated in 36 deals totaling US$1.2 billion in disclosed funding in the virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) field, which translates to 71% growth in deals and a 277% boom in aggregated funding value. In possibly the clearest demonstration of Chinese interest in the fast-growing sector, 21% of all recorded AR/VR deals last year included a China-based investor, according to data from CB Insights.
China National Tourism Administration has teamed up with HTC Vive, a virtual reality headset developer backed by HTC Corporation and Valve Corporation, and a Chinese online travel company to launch a virtual reality-enabled digital travel platform.
Guian New Area, a 1,795 square kilometer economic zone located near Guiyang city in sleepy Guizhou province, has established Beidouwan Virtual Reality (VR) Town, an initiative backed by preferential government policies to support the development in the fast-growing VR industry in China.
Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. has led a US$18 million series B round in Swiss holographic augmented reality developer Wayray, according to a company announcement.
Gobi Partners, a Shanghai-based venture capital firm focused on information technology, telecom, media and technology (TMT) and digital media industries, has joined a US$15.5 million series B round in WaveOptics, a U.K.-based augmented reality (AR) company.
As pornography is banned in China, a Taiwanese firm wants to get some skin in the game.
Lenovo Capital and Incubator Group have led a pre-A round worth tens of millions of RMB in Beijing NED+AR Display Technology Co., Ltd., a supplier of optical modules for augmented reality glasses.
Chinese investment firm, Shanghai Cableway Investment, has led a series B investment round of nearly RMB100 million (US$14 million) in HiScene, a Beijing-based start-up developing hardware and software products for augmented reality.
Autohome, a Chinese automobile sales platform backed by Li Xiang, founder of electric vehicle start-up NIO, has led a series A round worth nearly RMB100 million (US$14 million) in Sight Plus, an augmented reality solutions provider.
Singapore’s Temasek Holdings has led a US$502 million series D round in Magic Leap Inc., a U.S.-based augmented reality start-up.
Sequoia Capital China and SoftBank Group have invested US$50 million in augmented reality camera app developer Snow China, according to a Snow Corporation announcement.
Wang Lifeng, a visual technology expert who previously worked as a director at Autodesk Software (China) Co., Ltd., and a researcher at Microsoft Corporation, has joined 51HiTech, a Beijing-based virtual reality and augmented reality start-up as chief technology officer, according to the firm’s announcement on its WeChat account.
Chinese furniture retailer Red Star Macalline Group has led a RMB300 million (US$48 million) series B funding round in 3vjia.com, a Chinese 3D home design and furnishing portal employing virtual reality technology.