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Big data industry booming in Guizhou

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-09-26 10:13

GUIYANG — In the 12,000-hectare Grass Sea natural reserve tucked away in Southwest China's Guizhou province, the entire area has been "digitalized" as a part of the "Grass Sea cloud."

The reserve is home to one of China's famous plateau lakes and more than 1,900 species, including the national protected black-necked crane.

With the Grass Sea big data monitoring system, the hydrological, environmental, meteorological and biological information of the reserve have been uploaded to a big data cloud under real-time surveillance.

Chen Bo, head of Weining county where the lake is located and a newly-appointed "cloud chief," said the cloud was key to the ecological protection of the reserve.

Guizhou is one of the least developed regions in China. Yet it has become a pioneer in China's big data development due to its beneficial climate, power supply and network infrastructure. Big data is being widely applied in government management, business and daily life.

The provincial government has set up a leading group for big data, with the provincial governor as leader. Leaders at various local levels are the "cloud chiefs" responsible for big data development within their regions.

"The big data industry is a perfect opportunity for Guizhou to develop its economy without introducing polluting industries, while helping its poor population shake off poverty," said Jing Yaping, deputy director of the provincial big data development authority.

The United States tech giant Apple Inc announced the opening of its first Chinese data center in the province in early July. With an investment of $1 billion, the data center plans to offer iCloud services on the Chinese mainland.

Before this, China's three largest telecom operators, China Mobile, China Unicom and China Telecom, had all built data centers in Guizhou. Construction of a data storage center for Huawei has also begun. Internet giants such as Alibaba and Tencent have also moved to establish cloud computing bases and big data centers.

Jing said Guizhou was also leading the country in opening up government data. Opening up tax data has accelerated the credit investigations of local banks and their lending efficiency to small companies. Opening up civil aviation data has fostered successful mobile apps that offer accurate flight information and related services to passengers.

Thanks to the opening up of road and logistics data, Truck Appliance, the only unicorn company in the province, is able to create an information sharing platform for China's 3.7 million truck drivers and 630,000 cargo owners. It had attracted total financing of $370 million as of May.

Guiyang Big Data Exchange, the first of its kind in China, started operation in April 2015. A total of 2,000 members exchange and trade data-related assets and services with the transaction amount exceeding $45 million so far.

A total of 28 big data scientific research institutions have also been set up in the province, as well as 23 incubators and investment organizations.

"Big data has also become a magnet for talent, enabling more young people to settle here," Jing said.

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