At the recent Global ARVR China Summit in Shanghai, there were dozens of companies specializing in augmented, virtual and mixed reality (AR, VR and MR, now often to as XR), many of them pushing the medium forward. Compared with announcements by tech titans such as Microsoft, Google and Qualcomm Technologies, the innovations by local Chinese companies were not only impressive, some were truly groundbreaking when compared to current international industrial developments.

The ‘Niche’ In China

The XR industry in China has often been in the spotlight due to Chinese manufacturers’ track record in hardware specialization. For many years they have been producing VR headsets, 360 cameras, and reputably – gaming machines and peripherals; as a result, they were amongst the earliest to set up VR arcades in first tier cities such as Beijing and Shanghai.

Chinese tech companies have already carved out their own niche in the VR space, creating their own eco-systems, demand, content, platforms and more – to cater to their domestic market. One such company is Superb Medical Skills. The company has developed China’s first VR “live” surgery application, supported by more than 3,700 practitioners from all over the country to deliver clinical training to both doctors and trainees through VR headsets.

Also in the vein of training and education, Ugion Technology has developed a proprietary multi-person holographic interactive system, called “Holomax”, which enables 3D holographic assets to be used for learning by both students and working professionals. Another company, Shadow Creator, has developed unique hardware solutions which interface with applications like Microsoft’s ‘Hololens’. Their visual reality headset – “Air” – can also be used with a tablet to allow users to watch 3D movies and read digital books. While these companies — and many more — have shown interesting developments in their local XR industries, there are a few others that have gone even further.

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