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 Cloud in Healthcare: 3D modelling and rendering.
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, software as a medical device (SaMD), augmented reality/virtual reality (AR/VR) medical imaging interfaces, and automated clinical documentation are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. Medical image display devices, 3D modelling and rendering, and AI-assisted electronic health records (EHR) are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas are wearable fitness monitors and medical device secure data transmission, which are now well established in the industry.
Innovation S-curve for cloud in the healthcare industry
3D modelling and rendering is a key innovation area in cloud
A computer graphics technique called 3D rendering makes use of three-dimensional models and data. A lifelike or non-photorealistic image is what is desired. A 3D model is a digital representation of an object made with software or through 3D scanning. An additional type of virtual photography is 3D rendering.
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 50+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established healthcare companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of 3D modelling and rendering.
Key players in 3D modelling and rendering – 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 3D modelling and rendering
|Company||Total patents (2010 - 2021)||Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies|
|Heartflow Inc||327||Unlock company profile|
|Stryker Corp||148||Unlock company profile|
|Koninklijke Philips NV||101||Unlock company profile|
|Boston Scientific Corp||50||Unlock company profile|
|Align Technology Inc||49||Unlock company profile|
|EBM Corp||42||Unlock company profile|
|Johnson & Johnson||40||Unlock company profile|
|Dentsply Sirona Inc||38||Unlock company profile|
|Fujifilm Holdings Corp||37||Unlock company profile|
|Smith & Nephew Plc||30||Unlock company profile|
|EcoSense Lighting Inc||25||Unlock company profile|
|Siemens AG||22||Unlock company profile|
|NovaRad Corp||19||Unlock company profile|
|Vektor Medical Inc||18||Unlock company profile|
|Surgical Theater LLC||17||Unlock company profile|
|Samsung Group||17||Unlock company profile|
|Synaptive Medical Inc||16||Unlock company profile|
|ResMed Inc||14||Unlock company profile|
|Alcon Inc||14||Unlock company profile|
|SymphonyAI Group||14||Unlock company profile|
|International Business Machines Corp||13||Unlock company profile|
|Abbott Laboratories||13||Unlock company profile|
|Medtronic Plc||12||Unlock company profile|
|Furukawa Co Ltd||12||Unlock company profile|
|Materialise NV||12||Unlock company profile|
|Medit Corp||11||Unlock company profile|
|Shanghai United Imaging Healthcare Co Ltd||11||Unlock company profile|
|Axial Medical Printing Ltd||10||Unlock company profile|
|Carl Zeiss Stiftung AG||10||Unlock company profile|
|Magic Leap Inc||10||Unlock company profile|
|Accuray Inc||9||Unlock company profile|
|Nant Holdings Ip, LLC||9||Unlock company profile|
|Sony Group Corp||9||Unlock company profile|
|CMR Surgical Ltd||8||Unlock company profile|
|3M Co||8||Unlock company profile|
|Calgary Scientific Inc||8||Unlock company profile|
|Intuitive Surgical Inc||8||Unlock company profile|
|EchoPixel Inc||8||Unlock company profile|
|Canon Inc||8||Unlock company profile|
|Zaxis Labs||8||Unlock company profile|
|Wuxi EA Medical Instruments Technologies Ltd||7||Unlock company profile|
|StoryUP Studios||7||Unlock company profile|
|Meta Platforms Inc||7||Unlock company profile|
|Envista Holdings Corp||7||Unlock company profile|
|FEops nv||6||Unlock company profile|
|Raysearch Laboratories AB||6||Unlock company profile|
|Peacs BV||6||Unlock company profile|
|Butterfly Network Inc||5||Unlock company profile|
|Ivoclar Vivadent AG||5||Unlock company profile|
|Montefiore Medical Center||5||Unlock company profile|
Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics
In all clinical specialities, 3D modelling will make it easier to view anatomical images, improving diagnosis, surgery planning, education, and outcomes. The overarching objective is to develop a future state in which clinicians will be able to interact with human anatomy and pathology in a way that has never been possible before. With 3D modelling, there is much unrealised potential for better comprehension.
To further understand how Cloud is disrupting the healthcare industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Cloud Computing in Healthcare.