Faced with the ever-changing global trends and markets, companies around the world are keen to develop innovative technologies and seek patent protection to safeguard their R&D results against counterfeiting and piracy. By carefully studying major patent databases, companies can peek into the technology trends and competitors' deployments while avoiding risks of patent litigation at the same time.
To further understand smart manufacturing patent portfolios of assignees and the possible impact on the industry, Taipei-based MIC (Market Intelligence and Consulting Institute) conducted a patent mining analysis based on the search results obtained from the USPTO (United States Patent and Trademark Office) for patents applied during January 1, 1996 and June 30, 2015.
"Looking at the data mining results of the 2,288 smart-manufacturing-related patents, MIC found that most of them were concentrated in the sectors of Electrical Engineering (66.2%) and Instruments (21.7%), with a consolidated share of 87.9%," explains David Chen, industry analyst with MIC. "By field, 41.7% of the patents were in Computer technology, 11.1% in Control, and 9.3% in Measurement. Other fields with smaller share include Electrical machinery, apparatus, energy, Digital communication, Telecommunications, Basic communication processes, Audio-visual technology, and IT methods for management."
Smart Manufacturing Patents by Sector and Field
Source: MIC, January 2016
As far as sector is concerned, Computer technology, Control, and Measurement are clearly the focal areas of vendors' patent deployment. Together with Digital communication, Telecommunications, and IT methods for management, the results showed that companies are deploying smart manufacturing patents mainly for the purpose of building cloud automated control service platforms.
Since fewer companies have applied smart manufacturing patents in chemical, food, biotechnology, mechanical, transport, and machine tools industries, these sectors are relatively uncontested for perspective vendors. For example, food makers can systematically build up their patent portfolios when inventing unique food production processes with smart manufacturing technologies.
To see more about this report, please visit: The Future of Smart Manufacturing Patent Analysis and Vendors' Deployment
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Market Intelligence & Consulting Institute (MIC), based in Taipei, Taiwan, was founded in 1987. MIC is Taiwan's premier IT industry research and consulting firm providing intelligence, in-depth analysis, and strategic consulting services on global IT product and technology trends, focusing on markets and industries in Asia-Pacific. MIC is part of the Institute for Information Industry. http://mic.iii.org.tw/english