The technology industry continues to be a hotbed of patent innovation. Activity is driven by artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning and the Internet of Things (IoT),  and growing importance of technologies involving computer vision algorithms advanced cameras, infrared sensors, and smart eye-tracking devices to improve occupational safety and efficiency. 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 Innovation in technology: gaze trackingBuy 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, aural exciters, in-memory computing, and network-on-a-chip are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. RAID transmission error detection, projector-camera system, and hyperspectral imaging, and surround sound systems are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas are digital image interpolation and distributed RAID drives, which are now well established in the industry.

Innovation S-curve for the technology industry

Gaze tracking is a key innovation area in technology

The act of measuring and observing the movement and focus of a person's eyes is referred to as gaze tracking. This technology is often utilised in research, marketing, and user experience analysis to determine where an individual's attention is directed and how they interact with their surroundings.

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 80+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established technology companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of gaze tracking.

Key players in gaze tracking – 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 gaze tracking

Company Total patents (2010 - 2022) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
COLOPL 17 Unlock Company Profile
HTC 15 Unlock Company Profile
Qualcomm 23 Unlock Company Profile
Microsoft 111 Unlock Company Profile
Apple 71 Unlock Company Profile
Meta Platforms 33 Unlock Company Profile
Koninklijke Philips 27 Unlock Company Profile
BAE Systems 19 Unlock Company Profile
Nokia 21 Unlock Company Profile
Panasonic 13 Unlock Company Profile
Canon 14 Unlock Company Profile
Kyocera 17 Unlock Company Profile
Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson 15 Unlock Company Profile
Sony Group 167 Unlock Company Profile
zSpace 11 Unlock Company Profile
NVIDIA 10 Unlock Company Profile
IBM 10 Unlock Company Profile
Honeywell International 10 Unlock Company Profile
eSight 15 Unlock Company Profile
Broadcom 10 Unlock Company Profile
Tobii 83 Unlock Company Profile
Intel 37 Unlock Company Profile
Snap 18 Unlock Company Profile
Magic Leap 426 Unlock Company Profile
FOVE- 30 Unlock Company Profile
Valve 15 Unlock Company Profile
RealView Imaging 31 Unlock Company Profile
Augmedics 15 Unlock Company Profile
Varjo Technologies 44 Unlock Company Profile
SeeReal Technologies 12 Unlock Company Profile
Tectus 21 Unlock Company Profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Among the companies innovating in gaze tracking, Magic Leap is the leading patent filer. One of the company’s patents is aimed at creating a virtual image generation system in which a plurality of synthetic image frames of the three-dimensional scene is rendered and sequentially displayed to an end user. Each of the displayed image frames has a non-uniform resolution distribution.

Other prominent patent filers in the gaze tracking space include Sony Group and Microsoft.

By geographic reach, RealView Imaging leads the pack, followed by Magic Leap and Tectus. In terms of application diversity, SeeReal Technologies holds the top position, followed by RealView Imaging and Magic Leap.

Gaze tracking can help identify user preferences and interactions, leading to the development of more intuitive interfaces and better user experiences. It provides insights to improve marketing strategies and the diagnosis and treatment of eye-related diseases and disorders, and monitor a driver's attention on the road, helping to prevent accidents and increase safety.

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.