Chinese internet conglomerate Baidu (Nasdaq: BIDU) has announcing the formation of a new Smart Living Group (SLG). Lu Qi, president and COO at Baidu, will serve as general manager of the new business unit. The SLG will be formed jointly by Baidu's Duer AI business division, hardware ecosystem channels department, and Raven Studio workshop. The Duer business division will continue to be led by Jing Kun and will focus on development and operations related to the DuerOS platform and ecosystem. The former hardware ecosystem channels department will be upgraded to business division status and will be led by Yang Yongcheng. The business division will focus on mass-production, e-commerce, and distribution channel expansion for Baidu hardware products. The former Baidu smart hardware business division, RavenTech, will be renamed to "Raven Studio Workshop" and will be led by Jesse Lv (Lv Cheng). The workshop will focus on exploring new, cutting-edge products and prototypes. These three business units will all report directly to Lu Qi.
As of January 2018, the number of activated smart hardware devices using the DuerOS operating system reached more than 50 mln, including over 10 mln monthly active devices.