The technology industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation, with activity driven by the convergence of technological progress, heightened connectivity, and the necessity for companies to enhance efficiency and competitiveness in a swiftly transforming marketplace, and growing importance of technologies such as global positioning system (GPS), global navigation satellite system (GNSS), radar, and light detection and ranging (LiDAR). These technologies are often combined and integrated into a comprehensive anti-collision system for drones, providing multiple layers of protection and enhancing the safety of drone operations. In the last three years alone, there have been over 3.6 million patents filed and granted in the technology industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Innovation in Internet of Things: Drone anti-collision systems. 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 stabilising 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.
300+ 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 2.5 million patents, there are 300+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.
Within the emerging innovation stage, environmental sensors, digital twins, and network-on-a-chip are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. Intelligent embedded systems, smart factory systems and smart grids are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas are, contactless verification, wearable physiological monitors, and software-defined wide area network, which are now well established in the industry.
Innovation S-curve for IoT in the technology industry
Drone anti-collision systems is a key innovation area in IoT
Anti-collision systems for drones have been developed to identify and prevent collisions with objects, including other drones, structures, vegetation, power lines, and individuals. These systems leverage a range of technologies like GPS, sensors, computer vision, and radio-based systems to detect and monitor nearby objects. The collected data is then utilised to compute an optimal path for the drone, ensuring collision avoidance.
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 drone anti-collision systems.
Key players in drone anti-collision systems – a disruptive innovation in the technology industry
‘Application diversity’ measures the number of different applications identified for each relevant patent and broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.
‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of different countries each relevant patent is registered in and reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.
Patent volumes related to drone anti-collision systems
Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics
SZ DJI Technology is one of the leading patent filers in drone anti-collision systems. The company’s patents are aimed at method and apparatus for prompting a position of an aerial vehicle. The method may include obtaining first position information of the aerial vehicle and second position information of a ground end and presenting a relative position relationship between the aerial vehicle and the ground end on a pre-set map according to the first position information and the second position information. Flight status including flight position and other suitable information of an aerial vehicle may therefore be directly provided.
Other prominent patent filers in the space include Walmart and Amazon.
By geographic reach, Halliburton leads the pack, followed by Tevel Aerobotics Technologies and MinebeaMitsumi. In terms of application diversity, PRENAV holds the top position, followed by Alarmcom and BlueHalo.
Drone anti-collision systems can play a significant role in ensuring safety, regulatory compliance and operational efficiency, enabling diverse applications, and shaping public perception. These systems are pivotal in maximising the benefits of drone technology while mitigating risks associated with collisions and ensuring responsible drone operation.