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 Wearable Tech in Healthcare: Wearable physiological sensors.
According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which uses over 443,000 patents to analyse innovation intensity for the healthcare industry, there are 200+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.
Wearable physiological sensors is a key innovation area in wearable tech
Wearable psychological sensors are medical devices that use semiconductor technology to continuously, instantly, and painlessly measure human physiological parameters. These sensors incorporate numerous developments in electrocardiogram (ECG), electromyogram (EMG), electrocardiogram (EEG)-based neural sensing platforms, microelectromechanical (MEMS), biological, and chemical sensing. Due to their low cost, simplicity, and portability, biological and chemical sensors are increasingly seen as promising alternatives to expensive analytical instruments in the healthcare sector.
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 wearable physiological sensors.
Key players in wearable physiological sensors – 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 wearable physiological sensors
Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics
CellAegis Devices is one of the leading patent filers in the field of wearable physiological sensors. Some other key patent filers in the field include Baxter International and Stryker.
In terms of application diversity, 2breathe Technologies leads the pack, followed by Kyocera and Cogniguard Medical. By means of geographic reach, GyroGear holds the top position, followed by EW Healthcare Partners and Ceragem in second and third spots, respectively.
These wearable technology models with artificial intelligence assistance will be crucial for managing and forecasting patient health variations as well as for improvements in battery life. Energy harvesting, a technique for transforming body heat, movement, or solar energy into raw power, could be incorporated into these devices in the future. A few of the desired qualities of new wearable healthcare device design ideas include stretchability, ultra-thinness, biocompatibility, biodegradability, and self-healing. Furthermore, the COVID-19 pandemic had a big impact on how wearable technology was created. The healthcare industry is developing customised heterogeneous devices such as psychological wearables through the Internet of Things and more advanced smart algorithms and also promises to flatten the cost curve for healthcare in the near future.
To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the healthcare industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Healthcare.