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 Internet of Things in Healthcare: Physiological monitoring fitness equipments.

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, smart helmets, body temperature sensors, and software as a medical device (SaMD) are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. Smart balloon catheters, point-of-care molecular diagnostics, and automated immunoassay analysers are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas are smart contact lenses and global positioning system (GPS) integrated fitness monitors, which are now well established in the industry. 

Innovation S-curve for Internet of Things in the healthcare industry

Physiological monitoring fitness equipment is a key innovation area in Internet of Things

Physiological status monitoring devices are non-invasive devices that are used to measure various body parameters like glucose levels, heart rate, and blood pressure. These devices can be used by patients as well as fitness athletes to measure performance while walking or running, and this information can be monitored by healthcare professionals or coaches remotely using the internet.

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 70+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established healthcare companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of physiological monitoring fitness equipment.

Key players in physiological monitoring fitness equipment – 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 physiological monitoring fitness equipment

Company Total patents (2010 - 2021) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
NIKE 578 Unlock company profile
adidas 148 Unlock company profile
Apple 85 Unlock company profile
Peloton Interactive 82 Unlock company profile
Alphabet 76 Unlock company profile
Samsung Group 62 Unlock company profile
Koninklijke Philips 54 Unlock company profile
Polar Electro 51 Unlock company profile
iFIT Health & Fitness 50 Unlock company profile
FitStar Labs 41 Unlock company profile
Toyota Motor 32 Unlock company profile
Technikka Conexion 31 Unlock company profile
Casio Computer 28 Unlock company profile
Seiko Epson 28 Unlock company profile
Sony Group 27 Unlock company profile
Microsoft 26 Unlock company profile
ROM Technologies 23 Unlock company profile
Amer Sports 23 Unlock company profile
GyroGear 22 Unlock company profile
Fox Factory Holding 22 Unlock company profile
TOCA Football 19 Unlock company profile
Immersion 19 Unlock company profile
LG 17 Unlock company profile
EW Healthcare Partners 17 Unlock company profile
Technogym 17 Unlock company profile
MAD DOGG ATHLETICS 17 Unlock company profile
Lifecycle Technologies 16 Unlock company profile
InfoMotion Sports Technologies 16 Unlock company profile
Interactive Strength 15 Unlock company profile
Nautilus 15 Unlock company profile
Omron 14 Unlock company profile
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique 13 Unlock company profile
Isolynx 13 Unlock company profile
F45 Training 13 Unlock company profile
Skyhawke Technologies 12 Unlock company profile
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur Forderung der Angewandten Forschung 12 Unlock company profile
Inova Design Solutions 12 Unlock company profile
Teijin 12 Unlock company profile
Garmin 11 Unlock company profile
Intel 11 Unlock company profile
Berkshire Hathaway 11 Unlock company profile
New Balance 10 Unlock company profile
MTG 9 Unlock company profile
Dentsu Group 9 Unlock company profile
Origin Enterprises 9 Unlock company profile
Artemis 8 Unlock company profile
Tau Orthopedics 8 Unlock company profile
Nokia 8 Unlock company profile
eGym 8 Unlock company profile
Tonal Systems 7 Unlock company profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

NIKE is one of the leading patent filers in the field of physiological monitoring fitness equipment. Some other key patent filers in the field include adidas and Alphabet.

In terms of application diversity, Inova Design Solutions leads the pack, followed by Lifecycle Technologies and Dentsu Group. By means of geographic reach, Inova Design Solutions holds the top position, followed by Origin Enterprises and Lifecycle Technologies in second and third spots, respectively.

Physiological monitoring fitness equipment has proved to be very effective in remotely monitoring the performance of athletes. Technological advancements and integration of artificial intelligence would further allow automated health and performance optimisation for athletes.

To further understand how Internet of Things is disrupting the healthcare industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Internet of Things (IoT) 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.