Tuesday, 23 January 2018

网上可打官司!重庆法院“易诉”平台启用 – Sina

What happened: Chongqing High People’s Court announced on Monday the launch of its “易诉” (roughly translated to “easy sue”) platform—a virtual court that handles most of the legal process online, including paying for legal fees, looking up historical records, submitting documentations, and even attending court sessions.

Why it’s important: China has been attempting to boost its smart court systems for quite a while. Towards the end of last year, the government extended its court system intranet to over 3,500 local courts across China, which allows all judicial officers to access the same information through the database. Digitizing the legal process through the online platform saves time and lowers the costs of civil lawsuits, especially for those living in remote and poorer regions in the country. —Nicole Jao

A look at China’s push for digital national ID cards – SCMP

What’s happened: A detailed overview of how WeChat is being used as a virtual ID card in a district of Guangzhou: how users set it up and how and where they can use it.

Why it’s important: According to the report, the system will begin to roll out nationally from this January after this trial that started in December. But also according to the report, only government offices are recognizing the ID and not places such as hotels. This is going to be an important topic to monitor as WeChat integrates with more public services. -Frank Hersey

Meitu Taps Blockchain for Facial Recognition Authentication System – Yicai Global

What happened: Chinese selfie king Meitu is planning to develop a blockchain-based facial recognition system to decentralize user authentication. This means users will be able to use Meitu’s apps with facial recognition that does not require 3rd party authentication.

Why it’s important: Much like in the rest of the world, in China blockchain seems to be every company’s favorite buzzword these days. It remains to be seen if this is just an attempt to create some hype but what is certain is that Meitu has acquired millions of photographs through its selfie apps that could be used in AI training. —Masha Borak

Tencent beats Amazon to launch unmanned shop, but lags other Chinese tech rivals – SCMP

What happened: Tencent has opened an unmanned pop-up store on January 20 in Shanghai. It will run for 16 days until February 4, and has drawn over 30,000 visitors in the first two days.

Why it’s important: While Amazon Go is opening to public this week in the US, the Chinese unmanned store players are still working on a seamless and effortless shopping experience. —Timmy Shen

Bitmain is buying 20k 16nm wafers from TSMC per month (more than NVIDIA) – ARKInvest

What happened: Chinese bitcoin miner Bitmain, the largest miner in the world, is rumored to be buying 20,000 16 nanometer wafers from Taiwan’s TSMC, the largest contract chip manufacturer in the world. This is more than what Nvidia orders.

Why it’s important: The cryptocurrency mania has been criticized as a bubble by most of the traditional financial establishment. However, the gains brought by the increase in bitcoin and other cryptocurrency pricing are starting to show in traditional industries. In the latest earnings call for TSMC, it was revealed that $350 to $400 million in revenues came from cryptocurrency miners. —Linda Lew

商用车能源供应商车主邦能链获得5000万元A轮融资,即将布局“区块链+能源” – 36kr

What happened: Energy-focused startup 车主邦 (chezhubang) received RMB 50 million A round of financing. The round of financing will be used to promote new projects on energy big data and energy blockchain.

Why it’s important: Blockchain and new energy are two sectors that both China’s government is pushing forward, and investors are looking to find deals. The headline says company is focusing on blockchain and energy, but it doesn’t explain in the article how blockchain is used in the energy. The company, like its plan, should expand to cities in China and make real use cases to prove its ‘blockchain’ capacity. —Eva Yoo

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