Robohub.org
 

Global trends in robotics from patent analysis

by
15 June 2014



share this:
Screen Shot 2014-06-15 at 12.29.09 PM

120,000 robotics patents have been published in the last 10 years, tripling in rate from 2004 to 2013, according to the UK Intellectual Property Office Informatics Team. Unsurprisingly, there was a huge drop in robotics patent applications in 2009-2010, although not all industries were as affected by the global financial crisis as robotics was. The preeminent country for robotics patents is Japan with 31% of patents published, the majority from Toyota. The US is in second place with 19%, followed by Germany (17%), China (10%), Korea (9%), France (3%) and UK at only (2%). Of course this is only an indication of the innovation activity occurring as some countries have greater propensity to patent than others.

The UK IPO is publishing a series of 8 reports looking at trends in emerging/important industries and giving insight into innovation activity and direction for future funding. As well as robotics, the UK Government has identified ‘eight great technologies’ for future growth. These are:

• the big data revolution and energy-efficient computing;

• satellites and commercial applications of space;

• robotics and autonomous systems;

• life sciences, genomics and synthetic biology;

• regenerative medicine;

• agri-science;

• advanced materials and nanotechnology;

• energy and its storage.

Robotics_Infographic

The IPO report also looks at the rate of robotics patents compared to other innovation patents on a country basis and creates a relative specialization index. Some countries such as Japan, China and Germany have proportionately greater robotics patents than general. Whereas both the US and the UK are underspecialized in robotics technologies.

Relative Specialization Index by Country

Overall, automotive patents make up around one third of the total, not including other types of vehicles such as trucks, buses, agricultural machinery, aircraft and aerospace/defence. Google’s automotive patent portfolio is relatively small, at 35 families. Most of Google’s patents were published very recently in 2013, with the earliest being only in 2010. The rate of publishing for Google shows clear increase so further patents should be anticipated. The report also shows collaboration within industry groups. For example, Google and Honda are very self contained in contrast to other automotive companies.

Screen Shot 2014-06-15 at 12.42.53 PM

Most of the patents in the UK dataset are in the field of autonomous vehicles, including road vehicles, unmanned aerial vehicles, and unmanned underwater vehicles. Robotics companies in the UK dataset have very small portfolios, with the largest being Notetry (5 families), which is apparently a division of Dyson Ltd focussing on robotic vacuum cleaners. Other companies are Oliver Crispin Robotics Limited (industrial robotics), Absolute Robotics Limited (industrial robotics), Armstrong Healthcare Limited (robotics for surgeons), Isis Innovation Limited, QinetiQ Limited, and Rolls-Royce Plc.

Finally, the rate of change in robotics patent publishing in the last 10 years is very interesting with China showing significant growth from a China to become one of the strong sources of inventions.

Rate of change in patents published

 



tags: , ,


Andra Keay is the Managing Director of Silicon Valley Robotics, founder of Women in Robotics and is a mentor, investor and advisor to startups, accelerators and think tanks, with a strong interest in commercializing socially positive robotics and AI.
Andra Keay is the Managing Director of Silicon Valley Robotics, founder of Women in Robotics and is a mentor, investor and advisor to startups, accelerators and think tanks, with a strong interest in commercializing socially positive robotics and AI.





Related posts :



Unable to attend #ICRA2022 for accessibility issues? Or just curious to see robots?

There are many things that can make it difficult to attend an in person conference in the United States and so the ICRA Organizing Committee, the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society and OhmniLabs would like to help you attend ICRA virtually.
17 May 2022, by
ep.

350

podcast

Duckietown Competition Spotlight, with Dr Liam Paull

Dr. Liam Paull, cofounder of the Duckietown competition talks about the only robotics competition where Rubber Duckies are the passengers on an autonomous driving track.
17 May 2022, by

Designing societally beneficial Reinforcement Learning (RL) systems

In this post, we aim to illustrate the different modalities harms can take when augmented with the temporal axis of RL. To combat these novel societal risks, we also propose a new kind of documentation for dynamic Machine Learning systems which aims to assess and monitor these risks both before and after deployment.
15 May 2022, by

Innovative ‘smart socks’ could help millions living with dementia

‘Smart socks’ that track rising distress in the wearer could improve the wellbeing of millions of people with dementia, non-verbal autism and other conditions that affect communication.
13 May 2022, by

Swiss Robotics Day showcases innovations and collaborations between academia and industry

The 2021 Swiss Robotics Day marked the beginning of NCCR Robotics’s final year. The project, launched in 2010, is on track to meet all its scientific goals in the three areas of wearable, rescue and educational robotics, while continuing to focus on supporting spin-offs, advancing robotics education and improving equality of opportunities for all robotics researchers.
10 May 2022, by

Afreez Gan: Open Source Robot Dog, Kickstarter, and Home Robots | Sense Think Act Podcast #18

In this episode, Audrow Nash speaks to Afreez Gan, who is the founder and CEO of MangDang; MangDang is a Chinese startup that makes Minipupper, an open source robot dog that uses the Robot Operating S...





©2021 - ROBOTS Association


 












©2021 - ROBOTS Association