The technology industry continues to be a hotbed of patent innovation. Activity is driven by the convergence of technological progress, heightened connectivity, and the necessity for companies to enhance efficiency and competitiveness in a swiftly transforming marketplace, as well as growing importance of technologies such as the Internet of things (IoT), sensors, augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR), simulation and modelling software, data analytics, and machine learning. These technologies, when integrated and tailored to specific applications, enable the creation, management, and utilization of digital twins. 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 Virtual and augmented reality in technology: digital twins. Buy 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.
Digital twins is a key innovation area in virtual and augmented reality
Digital twins refer to virtual representations of physical assets that enable real-time data collection, monitoring, and analysis, offering a holistic perspective on asset performance. By detecting patterns, identifying issues, and making predictions about future outcomes, the data derived from digital twins empowers businesses to improve operations through enhanced asset understanding and informed decision-making.
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 digital twins.
Key players in digital twins – 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 digital twins
|Company||Total patents (2010 - 2022)||Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies|
|Samsung Electronics||5||Unlock Company Profile|
|Schneider Electric Industries||9||Unlock Company Profile|
|Robert Bosch||21||Unlock Company Profile|
|BOE Technology Group||5||Unlock Company Profile|
|Siemens Canada||8||Unlock Company Profile|
|VEGA Grieshaber||9||Unlock Company Profile|
|FANUC FA AMERICA||8||Unlock Company Profile|
|Siemens||13||Unlock Company Profile|
|Fisher Controls International||15||Unlock Company Profile|
|Siemens Schweiz||13||Unlock Company Profile|
|SMS group||6||Unlock Company Profile|
|Kortek Australia||12||Unlock Company Profile|
|ABB Schweiz||30||Unlock Company Profile|
|Trumpf Werkzeugmaschinen||5||Unlock Company Profile|
|Eaton Intelligent Power||5||Unlock Company Profile|
|Fisher-Rosemount Systems||295||Unlock Company Profile|
|Rockwell Automation Technologies||72||Unlock Company Profile|
|Endress+Hauser Conducta||6||Unlock Company Profile|
|Bristol||16||Unlock Company Profile|
|Endress + Hauser Process Solutions||13||Unlock Company Profile|
|Landis+Gyr Innovations||10||Unlock Company Profile|
|ABB Technology||10||Unlock Company Profile|
|Hefei BOE Display Technology||4||Unlock Company Profile|
|Intelligent Platforms||13||Unlock Company Profile|
|Yaskawa Electric||18||Unlock Company Profile|
|Buhler||16||Unlock Company Profile|
|Toyota Motor||5||Unlock Company Profile|
|Yokogawa Electric||62||Unlock Company Profile|
|Fanuc||12||Unlock Company Profile|
|ABB||53||Unlock Company Profile|
|Siemens||115||Unlock Company Profile|
|Endress+Hauser||21||Unlock Company Profile|
|General Electric||21||Unlock Company Profile|
|Omron||8||Unlock Company Profile|
|Kyland Technology||15||Unlock Company Profile|
|Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson||13||Unlock Company Profile|
|JTEKT||6||Unlock Company Profile|
|IBM||8||Unlock Company Profile|
|Honeywell International||17||Unlock Company Profile|
|The Procter & Gamble||12||Unlock Company Profile|
|Belimo||6||Unlock Company Profile|
|Toshiba||27||Unlock Company Profile|
|B.T.S.R. International||9||Unlock Company Profile|
|Technical Consumer Products||16||Unlock Company Profile|
|AVL List||12||Unlock Company Profile|
|AMI Global||6||Unlock Company Profile|
|Tulip Interfaces||35||Unlock Company Profile|
|SIPCO||10||Unlock Company Profile|
|Omron Tateisi Electronics||26||Unlock Company Profile|
|MachineSense||11||Unlock Company Profile|
Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics
Fisher-Rosemount Systems is the leading patent filer in digital twins. The company’s patents are related to process plants and process control and communication systems to secure communications between a local process plant/process control system and a remote system servicing the local process control plant/system.
Other prominent patent filers in the space include Siemens and Rockwell Automation Technologies.
By geographic reach, Tulip Interfaces leads the pack, followed by Bristol and Buhler. In terms of application diversity, SIPCO holds the top position, followed by BTSR International and Tulip Interfaces.
Digital twins play a crucial role in driving operational excellence, optimizing asset performance, fostering innovation, and enabling data-driven decision-making. It has ability to transform industries by harnessing real-time data, improving efficiency, reducing costs, and mitigating risks, ultimately leading to improved productivity and business outcomes.
To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the technology industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Virtual Reality (VR).