The technology industry continues to be a hotbed of patent innovation. Activity is driven by factors such as the increasing demand for scalable and flexible network architectures, the growth of cloud-based services, and the need for efficient network performance, thereby growing importance of technologies such as software-defined networking (SDN), network function virtualization (NFV), and intelligent traffic management algorithms. These technologies enable real-time traffic monitoring, intelligent routing decisions, and the ability to dynamically allocate network resources, leading to improved network performance, reduced latency, and enhanced scalability. As organizations strive for efficient and agile network operations, cloud innovation in virtual network traffic routing plays a vital role in achieving optimized and reliable network connectivity. 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 Cloud in technology: virtual network traffic routingBuy the report here.

According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which uses over 1.5 million patents to analyze innovation intensity for the technology industry, there are 190+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Virtual network traffic routing is a key innovation area in cloud

Virtual network traffic routing involves the efficient and secure movement of data packets between devices within a network. The process utilises routing protocols and algorithms to establish and determine the optimal paths for data traversal from one network node to another. Routing protocols are responsible for establishing the available paths for data packets, while algorithms analyse various factors to identify the most efficient route for each packet. By employing these protocols and algorithms, virtual network traffic routing ensures reliable and optimised data transmission across the network.

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 technology companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of virtual network traffic routing.

Key players in virtual network traffic routing – 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 virtual network traffic routing

Company Total patents (2010 - 2022) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
AT&T 20 Unlock Company Profile
Microsoft 92 Unlock Company Profile
Alibaba Group 14 Unlock Company Profile
State Grid Corporation of China 6 Unlock Company Profile
Hitachi 11 Unlock Company Profile
Citrix Systems 7 Unlock Company Profile
Dell Technologies 78 Unlock Company Profile
Riverbed Technology 9 Unlock Company Profile
H3C Technologies 16 Unlock Company Profile
Juniper Networks 58 Unlock Company Profile
Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson 52 Unlock Company Profile
A10 Networks 17 Unlock Company Profile
ATC Technology 5 Unlock Company Profile
VMware 540 Unlock Company Profile
Nippon Telegraph and Telephone 13 Unlock Company Profile
Airbus 6 Unlock Company Profile
IBM 95 Unlock Company Profile
NEC 66 Unlock Company Profile
Intel 56 Unlock Company Profile
NHN 7 Unlock Company Profile
Nutanix 18 Unlock Company Profile
Open Invention Network 8 Unlock Company Profile
Arrcus 66 Unlock Company Profile
Wangsu Science & Technology 6 Unlock Company Profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

VMware is the leading patent filer in virtual network traffic routing. One of the company’s patents describes in certain embodiments, a method for a network controller to manage a logical network in a data center without direct access to the forwarding elements. The method involves identifying a data compute node (DCN) in the data center, which operates on a host machine, and attaching it to the logical network. The DCN executes a workload application and a managed forwarding element (MFE), and the method distributes configuration data to the MFE for network security processing of data packets sent by the workload application without performing logical forwarding operations. The data packets maintain their original network address when received by the MFE and are unencapsulated.  

Other prominent patent filers in the space include IBM and Microsoft.

By geographic reach, Arrcus leads the pack, followed by A10 Networks and NEC. In terms of application diversity, State Grid Corporation of China holds the top position, followed by Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson and AT&T.

Cloud innovation in virtual network traffic routing has transformed the way network traffic is managed and optimized. This innovation leverages cloud computing infrastructure to dynamically direct network traffic flow across virtual networks.

To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the technology industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Technology.

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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.