The technology industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation, with activity driven by factors such as the increasing need for energy efficiency, the integration of renewable energy sources, and the demand for accurate billing and demand response programs. The growing importance of technologies such as smart meters with advanced communication capabilities, wireless sensor networks, data analytics platforms, and cloud-based infrastructure is further driving innovation in the technology industry. These technologies enable remote meter reading, real-time energy monitoring, and the ability to optimise energy usage based on consumption patterns. As the world focuses on sustainable energy practices and efficient resource management, IoT (Internet of Things) innovation in smart metering systems plays a pivotal role in enabling intelligent energy management, reducing costs, and promoting environmental sustainability. 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: Smart metering system. 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
Smart metering system is a key innovation area in IoT
Smart metering systems encompass automated energy management systems that empower customers to actively measure, monitor, and regulate their energy consumption in real-time. This cutting-edge technology equips customers with comprehensive insights into their energy usage patterns, enabling informed decisions for effective energy cost management. By facilitating more efficient customer service, reducing energy costs, and enhancing power grid reliability, smart metering systems bring significant advantages to utilities and end-users alike.
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 190+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established technology companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of smart metering system.
Key players in smart metering system – 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 smart metering system
Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics
General Electric is a leading patent filer in smart metering system. One of the company’s patents focuses on an optimisation-based method and system for enabling various loads and distributed energy resources (DERs) to participate in grid ancillary services. The method involves receiving decision parameters, optimising an objective to obtain flexible reserve power, determining a reserve power schedule, generating a service bid for the power grid, and providing flexible reserve power when the bid is accepted.
By geographic reach, enModus leads the pack, followed by ams and Sun Electric. In terms of application diversity, SIPCO holds the top position, followed by Senseware and A.T. Kearney.
IoT innovation in smart metering systems has revolutionised the way utilities measure and manage energy consumption. Smart metering systems leverage IoT technology to enable real-time monitoring, data collection, and analysis of energy usage in residential, commercial, and industrial settings.
To further understand how IoT is disrupting the technology industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Internet of Things – Thematic Research.