The number of insurance-related patent filings increased by 40% globally in 2017, highlighting that the industry is firmly ready for insurance innovation.
Research from RPC has found that the number of insurance patents filed globally stood at 917 in 2017, up 40% on 2016. The insurance industry is often seen as lagging behind other financial services in terms of innovation, but now the gap appears to be narrowing.
Where is the insurance innovation happening?
From a consumer perspective this can only be good news, although benefits for UK-based customers may take some time to come to fruition.
Allstate and State Farm – the insurers that filed the most patents in 2017 with a combined 69 patents – are both players in the US market. Yet ultimately the UK market will catch up, even if it lags slightly behind other major markets.
RPC also found that certain technologies are becoming hotbeds of insurance innovation.
For example, 22% of insurance patents filed in 2017 were related to pricing. This comes as insurers look to improve their premium pricing and improve risk profile assessment, answering consumers’ desire for more personalised premiums. Patents for technology that uses telematics and machine learning were also numerous.
With the global insurance industry clearly now open to innovation, the coming years could see the biggest developments in terms of new products and back-room processes, both of which will enhance the customer experience considerably. Innovation that helps improve consumer engagement with insurance will be a huge positive for the industry – and long overdue.
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