Tencent launched an operating system for internet-connected devices such as TVs and watches that is open to all developers, taking on domestic rivals Alibaba Group Holding Ltd and Xiaomi Inc in the smart hardware space.
Tencent Operating System and TOS+ allow manufacturers and developers to freely use the platform if they agree to share revenue. This model mirrors Google Inc's Android mobile OS, and could help Tencent replicate the U.S. firm's conquest of the majority of the world's smartphones.
"We want to inject more content into smart hardware systems and have connectivity across different terminals," Zhong Xiangping, head of TOS+, told the Global Mobile Internet Conference in Beijing.
Tencent, e-commerce giant Alibaba, which develops the Yun Operating System, and smartphone maker Xiaomi have already made forays into smart hardware, with internet-connected TVs, fitness bands and air purifiers.
Tencent said it wanted to layer the Android-based TOS+ over smart hardware, from TVs to watches and virtual reality headsets. That would mean playing games on a TV using a smartphone, or using a TOS+ smart watch to make payments from a handset, Zhong said.
Earlier this month, Alibaba formed a 'smart living' business unit as it races to introduce internet and computing capabilities to various kinds of everyday products.
Baidu Inc is also developing its own Android-based smart watch OS, DuWear, compatible with Sony Corp, Lenovo Group Ltd's Motorola and LG Corp wearables. The DuWear Watch is set to go on sale in June.