Lenovo Pushing Into AI And Robotics With Start-up Fund–Lenovo, the world’s largest PC maker, is joining other hardware technology companies looking to diversify by launching a $500 million start-up fund that will invest in cloud computing, big data, AI (artificial intelligence), internet services and robotics.

Lenovo Pushing Into AI And Robotics

It is just the latest Chinese company venturing into AI and robotics. Earlier this year, smartphone manufacturer Xiaomi announced its plans to build a research and development lab that will focus on virtual reality and robotics.

In 2015, Alibaba’s cloud-computing arm launched an artificial intelligence program that recently correctly predicted the winner of a popular Chinese TV singing competition.

While Lenovo is making a later push than its competitors into the sector, analysts say the AI and robotics market is still relatively underdeveloped.

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Lenovo Pushing Into AI 1 And Robotics
Lenovo Pushing Into AI 1 And Robotics

Lenovo also has a chance, depending on how quickly they move, because the market is still in its early stages. Nobody has set the standards yet, said Ken Xu, a partner at the Shanghai-based venture capital firm Gobi Partners.

The fund could identify potential growth areas in the market and new technology, but ultimately its success will come down to whether Lenovo allows it to independently operate, Xu said.

The fund will be internally managed by the Lenovo Capital and Incubator Group, which was created in March earlier this year to act as an incubator for the company’s other products.

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The Chinese government is making robotics and AI a priority as part of its Made in China 2025 initiative, but so far the country lags behind other world leaders. China has 36 robots per 10,000 manufacturing workers, while Germany has 292 and South Korea counts 478.