The UK Government Patent Office, in a global study of recent patents, has identified 8 technologies which they believe will propel future growth across the world.
Under the presumption that patent data can give valuable insight into innovative activity, the UK Government commissioned their Intellectual Property Office to review the international patent scene. The result is a new report: Eight Great Technologies of which Robotics and Autonomous Systems is one of the eight:
1. the big data revolution and energy-efficient computing
2. satellites and commercial applications of space
3. robotics and autonomous systems
4. life sciences, genomics and synthetic biology
5. regenerative medicine
7. advanced materials and nanotechnology
8. energy and its storage
The concluded that:
Robotics and autonomous systems patenting has grown consistently over the 10 year period that has been studied, with a tripling of patents over this period altogether. This growth exceeds the general growth in patenting by a large margin.
Japan is the clear leader worldwide. The USA, Germany, China, and Korea are other significant innovators.
The bulk of the dataset relates to autonomous vehicles, and so countries having large automotive sectors feature.
One of the report's findings is of importance to Americans. The chart above is explained below.
An index of relative specialisation of applicant countries indicates that Japan, Germany and China have positive specialisations but that the USA has a negative one indicating that, although raw numbers of USA patents in robots and autonomous systems are large, they are not as large as expected.