The technology industry continues to be a hotbed of patent innovation. Activity is driven by the increasing demand for interactive voice response systems, virtual assistants, and personalized customer experiences, alongside continuous advancements in artificial intelligence (AI) and natural language processing technologies, and growing importance of technologies such as deep neural networks for realistic voice generation, text-to-speech algorithms for accurate conversion, and language modeling for improved speech coherence, collectively driving progress in speech synthesis AI. In the last three years alone, there have been over 4.1 million patents filed and granted in the technology industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Artificial intelligence in technology: speech synthesis AI. Buy the report here.

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 stabilizing 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.

190+ innovations will shape the technology industry

According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which plots the S-curve for the technology industry using innovation intensity models built on over 1.5 million patents, there are 190+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Within the emerging innovation stage, GenAI for design, finite element simulation, and deep reinforcement learning are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. AI in EHR, intelligent predictive maintenance, and forward inferencing are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing.

Innovation S-curve for artificial intelligence in the technology industry

Speech synthesis AI is a key innovation area in artificial intelligence

Dynamic speech synthesis involves generating speech output signals using processed linear predictive coding (LPC) and processed residual signals.

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 120+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established technology companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of speech synthesis AI.

Key players in speech synthesis AI – a disruptive innovation in the technology industry

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

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

Patent volumes related to speech synthesis AI

Company Total patents (2010 - 2022) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Casio Computer 30 Unlock Company Profile
Microsoft 61 Unlock Company Profile
Toyota Motor 27 Unlock Company Profile
Yamaha 24 Unlock Company Profile
Telefonica 14 Unlock Company Profile
Capital One Financial 17 Unlock Company Profile
Apple 207 Unlock Company Profile
Hitachi 12 Unlock Company Profile
Ricoh 12 Unlock Company Profile
Meta Platforms 109 Unlock Company Profile
Capcom 9 Unlock Company Profile
Honda Motor 24 Unlock Company Profile
Mitsubishi Electric 22 Unlock Company Profile
Panasonic 23 Unlock Company Profile
Sony Group 108 Unlock Company Profile
Sharp 40 Unlock Company Profile
Nippon Telegraph and Telephone 35 Unlock Company Profile
IBM 87 Unlock Company Profile
Denso 19 Unlock Company Profile
BlackBerry 26 Unlock Company Profile
Toshiba 36 Unlock Company Profile
Intel 12 Unlock Company Profile
Japan Broadcasting 21 Unlock Company Profile
Cerence 39 Unlock Company Profile
Papercup Technologies 9 Unlock Company Profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Among the companies innovating in speech synthesis AI, Apple is one of the leading patents filers. The company’s patents are aimed at the smart automated assistant system interacting with the user through natural language conversation, seamlessly incorporating external services for information retrieval or task execution as needed. The system can be deployed across various platforms such as the web, e-mail, smartphones, or a combination thereof. In a specific configuration, it relies on interconnected domains and tasks, bolstered by additional capabilities provided by external services with which it can communicate. Other prominent patent filers in the space include Meta Platforms and Sony Group.

In terms of application diversity, Meta Platforms leads the pack, while Casio Computer and Apple stood in the second and third positions, respectively. By means of geographical reach, Apple held the top position, followed by Telefonica and Meta Platforms.

Speech synthesis AI is profoundly significant as it enables machines to communicate with humans in a natural and intelligible manner, revolutionizing applications such as virtual assistants, customer service, and accessibility tools for those with speech impairments. The technology not only enhances user interaction, but also opens new avenues for inclusive and efficient communication across diverse industries and demographics.

To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the technology industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Artificial Intelligence (AI).

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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.