NetEase doubles down on video gaming tech adoption in major deal to develop smart robots for China’s construction industry
- Fuxi Lab, the AI arm of NetEase Games, will jointly develop smart robots with a unit of China State Construction Engineering Corp
- NetEase founder William Ding expects the joint initiative to provide a new example of digital transformation in China’s construction industry
NetEase will use the technologies it has accumulated in the video gaming industry, such as AI and human-computer interaction design capabilities, to “make working [in construction] like playing games”, Fuxi Lab’s post said. “As workers’ efficiency improves, their salaries are also expected to increase.”
The intelligent machines under the two firms’ joint initiative include robots for excavation, loading and paving activities, which are expected to be launched in the next three years.
“Let the scenario of ‘one person simultaneously controlling hundreds of machines working non-stop for 24 hours’ become a reality,” Ding was quoted as saying in the Fuxi Lab post.
Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Shares of Hangzhou-based NetEase rose 4.11 per cent to US$71.21 on Thursday at the close of trading on the Nasdaq stock market.
The collaboration between Fuxi Lab and CCEED, which is involved in industrial equipment installation as well as construction process and management, reflects a growing trend to promote the “social value” of video gaming technologies, which can make a contribution outside online entertainment.
The report called for deeper integration of digital technologies into traditional industries to raise efficiency, enhancements in cyberspace and data security, and improved collaboration with economies around the world.