Tech

Tech

Shanghai to launch mandatory face scans for drug buyers
Shanghai is rolling out a drug collection terminal equipped with facial recognition technology for medicine buyers in an effort to stem abuse. At the new terminals, pharmacists and buyers of controlled medicines – such as those containing sedatives and psychotropic substances – will be asked to verify their identities by scanning their faces at pharmacies or hospitals, local media reported on Wednesday. The system, which scans both pharmacists and patients, is designed to flag potential and high-risk abusers as well as prevent health care professionals from colluding with patients in obtaining drugs illegally.  The move is expected to prevent potential abusers from obtaining prescription med
Shanghai to launch mandatory face scans for drug buyers
To go viral in China, creativity may be pointless
Can virality be taught? The more than 20 people gathered in a room in Shenzhen, in China’s southern Guangdong province, certainly think so.  Some have forked out as much as $1,400 for a weekend crash course on how to create short, funny videos that will get lots of views on Douyin, ByteDance’s Chinese version of its short-video app TikTok. Lots of clicks lead to potential advertising endorsements, or so the equation goes. Zhang Bo, a moon-faced man in his late 30s, is the man who promises to unlock the secrets of creating crazy popular videos.  Perched on a white table at the front of the class, Zhang regaled us with how one client made over $10.1 million in just three days following his met
To go viral in China, creativity may be pointless
6 hours spent online per day: China’s mobile population in numbers
Chinese mobile users are spending more time than ever on their devices, according to a report published by research firm QuestMobile on Thursday. From the beginning of 2019 to the end of last November, each user spent an average of 6.2 hours a day – or 1.8 full days a week – using mobile devices to get online. The number represents an 11.3% increase over the same period last year, data from QuestMobile showed.  The average number of apps they used per month also increased from 21.3 in 2018 to 23.6 in 2019, according to the report. 6.2 hours Average time Chinese users spend on their mobile devices per day A separate report by research firm eMarketer in May last year estimated that the average
6 hours spent online per day: China’s mobile population in numbers
How the smartphone completely transformed China in a decade
When finance industry employee Ringo Li relocated back to Beijing from Tokyo in 2010, he brought along his first smartphone – an iPhone 3G. Although one of the most advanced handsets available at the time, it was mainly used for text messages and phone calls, and occasional internet-surfing where Wi-fi was available. Life was mostly offline back then. Li would go to restaurants to order food, pay bills with cash and hail a taxi with an outstretched arm standing on the roadside. Fast forward 10 years and Li’s life has completely changed. No longer in finance, he communicates via WeChat and uses apps on his iPhone XS to order food, hail taxis, pay bills and shop. Most of the apps that permeate
How the smartphone completely transformed China in a decade
2019 was the year Chinese artificial intelligence clashed with US
In 2017, China told the world it planned to become a world leader in artificial intelligence (AI). Two years later, that promise came to dominate the Chinese, if not the global, conversation about technology. At a conference this past May, John Kerry, the former US secretary of state, said Chinese President Xi Jinping’s announcement was not the “wisest” move. “It would have probably been smart to go try to do it and not announce [the plan], because the announcement was heard in Washington and elsewhere,” he said. His words foreboded a storm approaching Chinese AI firms. Reports days later indicated Washington was considering placing several Chinese surveillance companies on the US Entity Li
2019 was the year Chinese artificial intelligence clashed with US
Armed to fight drones, China’s pig farmers busted for disrupting flights
Pig farms in China are fighting a high-tech war with gangsters reportedly plotting to profit off a national pork crisis. A pig farm in northeastern China deployed anti-drone equipment following rumors that gangs were trying to spread African swine fever by airdropping the virus into farms. The goal was to scare farmers into selling their livestock at a discount. African swine fever poses no risk to human health but is fatal to pigs. The disease has reduced China’s hog herds by over 40% due to mass culls designed to stop further spreading of the disease. The Chinese authorities uncovered the use of anti-drone devices after a number of pilots complained about losing GPS signals while flying ov
Armed to fight drones, China’s pig farmers busted for disrupting flights
China is launching its own digital currency. No, it’s nothing like Bitcoin
The Chinese government wants to build its own digital currency, but it is unlikely to experience the investment frenzy that launched Bitcoin into the mainstream. The central bank official in charge of the project said the new currency, developed under a project known as the Digital Currency Electronic Payment, would not be open to speculation like other cryptocurrencies, disappointing would-be speculators. Mu Changchun, head of the People’s Bank of China’s digital currency research institute, on Saturday said it would be “a digital form of the yuan,” China’s official currency. There would be no speculation on its value and it would not need the backing of a basket of currencies, according t
China is launching its own digital currency. No, it’s nothing like Bitcoin
One in 20 Chinese workers could be replaced by robots by 2025
By 2025, machines and robots are set to replace nearly 5% of China’s workforce, according to an industry report released this week. In a survey of nearly 2,000 companies in China, the Wuhan University Institute of Quality Development Strategy found that 13.4% used robots as part of their processes in 2017, up from 8.1% two years before. As a result, about 40% of China’s manufacturing workforce could be “potentially affected” by the use of robots, putting further strain on the job market of the world’s most populous country, according to the report. The rise of automation had a disproportionate impact on workers with lower levels of education. Between 2015 and 2017, robotics replaced 9.4% of
One in 20 Chinese workers could be replaced by robots by 2025
Chinese internet behemoth challenges TikTok owner at home
As TikTok faces mounting pressure from US lawmakers concerned over national security issues and alleged censorship, its parent company, Bytedance, is encountering a different sort of challenge.  Tencent, China’s largest gaming and social media company, is set to invest $2 billion into Kuaishou, a rival short-video platform that competes with ByteDance-owned Douyin (the Chinese version of TikTok) in China, according to a report by The Information. Tencent and Kuaishou did not immediately respond to requests for comment. ByteDance declined to comment. Tencent is betting that Kuaishou can outcompete Douyin, which is increasingly challenging Tencent’s social media platforms in terms of user atte
Chinese internet behemoth challenges TikTok owner at home
TikTok boss hopes DC visit can ease censorship and privacy concerns
The Chinese-owned social media app TikTok is wildly popular in the US, especially among teenagers who spend hours posting videos about the latest dance trends, their love-life complaints and personal unique talents.  As it grows into one of the world’s most used social media platforms, TikTok has found itself under increased scrutiny in the US, its third-largest market.  In an attempt to assuage concerns over censorship and user privacy, the head of the short video platform, Alex Zhu, is embarking on a goodwill tour to Capitol Hill.  The meetings with American lawmakers, scheduled for this week, come as the video app’s Beijing-based owner ByteDance is under increasing scrutiny to address cen
 TikTok boss hopes DC visit can ease censorship and privacy concerns