The healthcare industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation, with activity driven by telemedicine, real-time diagnostics, smart hospitals and access to digital therapies, and the growing importance of technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), the internet of things (IoT), augmented reality (AR), robotics and data management practices. In the last three years alone, there have been over 106,000 patents filed and granted in the healthcare industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Artificial Intelligence in Healthcare: Smart medication dispenser.

However, not all innovations are equal and nor do they follow a constant upward trend. Instead, their evolution takes the form of an S-shaped curve that reflects their typical lifecycle from early emergence to accelerating adoption, before finally stabilising and reaching maturity.

Identifying where a particular innovation is on this journey, especially those that are in the emerging and accelerating stages, is essential for understanding their current level of adoption and the likely future trajectory and impact they will have.

200+ innovations will shape the healthcare industry

According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which plots the S-curve for the healthcare industry using innovation intensity models built on over 443,000 patents, there are 200+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Within the emerging innovation stage, drug delivery device security, microscopic image analysis models, and cellular imaging techniques are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. Smart balloon catheters, automated immunoassay analysers, and AI-assisted MRI are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas are smart fitness training system and non-invasive physiological monitoring, which are now well established in the industry. 

Innovation S-curve for artificial intelligence in the healthcare industry

Smart medication dispenser is a key innovation area in artificial intelligence

Because prescription drug abuse has become a massive problem globally, a solution was required to help patients medicate themselves regularly and responsibly. The smart medication dispenser's notifications can be set either by patients as well as their families with the push of a button, and their drugs are reviewed, managed, and delivered on a schedule. As a result, medication compliance is maintained, reminders are provided, drug intake is tracked and recorded, and prescriptions are swiftly filled.

GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 60+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established healthcare companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of smart medication dispenser.

Key players in smart medication dispenser – a disruptive innovation in the healthcare industry

‘Application diversity’ measures the number of different applications identified for each relevant patent and broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.

‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of different countries each relevant patent is registered in and reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.

Patent volumes related to smart medication dispenser

Company Total patents (2010 - 2021) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Becton Dickinson and Co 78 Unlock company profile
Yuyama 60 Unlock company profile
Koninklijke Philips 58 Unlock company profile
Teva Pharmaceutical Industries 49 Unlock company profile
Baxter International 41 Unlock company profile
AptarGroup 32 Unlock company profile
Omnicell 29 Unlock company profile
DAYA Medicals 28 Unlock company profile
AcelRx Pharmaceuticals 26 Unlock company profile
Cardinal Health 20 Unlock company profile
Intent Solutions 19 Unlock company profile
Compliance Meds Technologies 19 Unlock company profile
RxAdvance 17 Unlock company profile
Fujifilm Holdings 16 Unlock company profile
Beijing Electronics Holding 16 Unlock company profile
Healthbeacon 16 Unlock company profile
Waterio 16 Unlock company profile
Xerox Holdings 16 Unlock company profile
PerceptiMed 16 Unlock company profile
Access Business Group International 15 Unlock company profile
Pillo 13 Unlock company profile
AdhereTech 13 Unlock company profile
Emerson Electric 13 Unlock company profile
Avery Dennison 12 Unlock company profile
Dose Health 11 Unlock company profile
Dosentrx 11 Unlock company profile
MedicaSafe 11 Unlock company profile
Alphabet 11 Unlock company profile
eLucid mHealth 11 Unlock company profile
FirstEnergy 10 Unlock company profile
SMRxT 10 Unlock company profile
ODP 10 Unlock company profile
Midwest Medical Technologies of America 10 Unlock company profile
Evondos 9 Unlock company profile
Medtronic 9 Unlock company profile
LG 9 Unlock company profile
Abiogenix 9 Unlock company profile
Berkshire Biomedical 8 Unlock company profile
INRange Systems 8 Unlock company profile
Novo Nordisk Foundation 8 Unlock company profile
Aquestive Therapeutics 7 Unlock company profile
Stiplastics 7 Unlock company profile
Viatris 7 Unlock company profile
Access Business Group 7 Unlock company profile
Hanmi Science 7 Unlock company profile
International Business Machines 6 Unlock company profile
Global Tel*Link 6 Unlock company profile
AARDEX Group 6 Unlock company profile
Digital Medical Tech 6 Unlock company profile
Otsuka Holdings 6 Unlock company profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Becton Dickinson is one of the leading patent filers in smart medication dispenser. Some other key patent filers in the field include Yuyama and Koninklijke Philips.

In terms of application diversity, Baxter International leads the pack, followed by Teva Pharmaceuticals Industries and Global Tel*Link. By means of geographic reach, Access Business Group International holds the top position, followed by Stiplastics and Dosentrx in second and third spots, respectively.

One of the most important factors in overall health and well-being is medication compliance, which can be difficult for patients and caregivers to manage on daily basis. Owing to data security, reliable connectivity, and ease of use, patients and caregivers can rest knowing support is always available to help and enhance health outcomes. The future work that may be employed to enhance it further can be displaying the number of medications taken out of the dispenser on mobile devices, which will help in keeping track of a larger number of patients being examined.

To further understand how artificial intelligence is disrupting the healthcare industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Healthcare.


GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.