China Leads the World in Generative AI Adoption, Outpacing Global Competitors

A survey by SAS and Coleman Parkes Research shows China leads in generative AI adoption, with 83% of Chinese respondents using the technology, compared to the global average of 54%. The country’s rapid progress is further supported by its leading position in the generative AI patent race and advancements in continuous automated monitoring.

9 July 2024 – China is leading the global adoption of generative AI, according to a recent survey conducted by U.S. AI and analytics software company SAS and Coleman Parkes Research. The survey, which included 1,600 decision-makers across various industries worldwide, revealed that 83% of Chinese respondents have implemented generative AI technologies, such as those underpinning ChatGPT. This figure surpasses that of 16 other surveyed countries and regions, including the United States, where 65% reported using generative AI, compared to the global average of 54%.

The industries surveyed included banking, insurance, healthcare, telecommunications, manufacturing, retail, and energy. The survey results highlight China’s rapid progress in the field of generative AI, which has accelerated since the launch of ChatGPT by Microsoft-backed OpenAI in November 2022. This launch spurred numerous Chinese companies to develop their own versions of generative AI. A recent report by the United Nations’ World Intellectual Property Organization indicated that China leads the global generative AI patent race, having filed over 38,000 patents between 2014 and 2023, significantly outpacing the 6,276 patents filed by the United States during the same period.

Despite restrictions on many leading international generative AI service providers, including OpenAI, China has built a robust domestic industry. This includes contributions from tech giants like ByteDance and startups like Zhipu. The enterprise adoption of generative AI in China is anticipated to grow further as a price war among providers is likely to reduce the cost of large language model services for businesses.

The SAS report also noted that China is at the forefront of continuous automated monitoring (CAM), a widely deployed yet controversial use case for generative AI tools. CAM technology can collect and analyze extensive data on users’ activities, behavior, and communications, raising privacy concerns due to the lack of transparency about the data collection and its usage.

Udo Sglavo, vice president of applied AI and modeling at SAS, stated, “The algorithms and processes used in CAM are often proprietary and not transparent. This can make it difficult to hold the entities using CAM accountable for misuse or errors.” He further added, “China’s advancements in CAM contribute to its broader strategy of becoming a global leader in artificial intelligence and surveillance technologies.”


Author: Terry KS

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