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China's Tech Revolution

Forbes tells you how the world's most populous country is reshaping technology.

business Updated: Sep 17, 2009 17:15 IST

China is no longer merely the country that manufactured your iPod. Today, it's the epicenter of the biggest technological transformation in the history of the world: 1.3 billion data- and gadget-hungry individuals crowding into the 21st century at a pace that makes Silicon Valley look practically Amish in comparison.

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With 700 million cellphones, 338 million Internet users and millions more of each added every month, the tech world no longer treats China as a factory. Venture capitalists are pouring money into its every hint of innovation, and companies are opening their eyes to a billion potential customers. Meanwhile, that breathless growth and baffling scale is tangled up with a protectionist, information-suppressing government and one of the world's most active piracy industries.

All these things considered, China adds up to a very different face for the future. Welcome to the world's next technological dynasty.