While VR technology is still lingering on the fringes of the mainstream consumer, China’s tech giants are wasting no time in entering the field.

Alibaba announced Thursday the launch of its in-house VR research lab, dubbed the ‘GnomeMagic’ Lab after the inventor characters from World of Warcraft, together with the details of their VR strategy. The lab is overseen by a group of lead engineers from Alibaba’s wireless and architecture divisions, the firm added.

The company’s plan for the VR lab stems from its core e-commerce business. For its first-ever project, the “Crater”, GnomeMagic Lab is going to develop a 3D virtual warehouse with a view to integrate VR into the shopping experience. Alibaba claims to have completed 3D modeling for hundreds of products and will accelerate the process with standard modeling tools.

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Emma Lee

Emma Lee is Shanghai-based tech writer, covering startups and tech happenings in China and Asia in general. We are looking for stories related to tech and China. Reach her at lixin@technode.com.