The automotive industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation, with activity driven by autonomous and connected vehicles, and growing importance of technologies such as natural language processing and dynamic programming algorithm. In the last three years alone, there have been over 1.2 million patents filed and granted in the automotive industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Artificial intelligence in Automotive: Speech recognition techniques.

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.

290+ innovations will shape the automotive industry

According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which plots the S-curve for the automotive industry using innovation intensity models built on over 619,000 patents, there are 290+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Within the emerging innovation stage, manufacturability analysis, autonomous parking, and lidar for vehicle anti-collision are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. Speed profile estimation, smart light dimmers, and driver drowsiness detection are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas are road slope estimation and adaptive cruise control, which are now well established in the industry.

Innovation S-curve for artificial intelligence in the automotive industry

Speech recognition techniques is a key innovation area in artificial intelligence

Speech recognition techniques allow computers, applications, and software to comprehend and translate human speech data into text for business solutions. The speech recognition model operates by using artificial intelligence (AI) to analyse voice and language, recognise by learning the words and then output those words with transcription accuracy as model content or text data on a screen.

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 10+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established automotive companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of speech recognition techniques.

Key players in speech recognition techniques – a disruptive innovation in the automotive 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 speech recognition techniques

Company Total patents (2010 - 2021) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Toyota Motor 50 Unlock company profile
Hyundai Motor Group 41 Unlock company profile
Porsche Automobil Holding 32 Unlock company profile
Honda Motor 30 Unlock company profile
Kia 30 Unlock company profile
General Motors 26 Unlock company profile
Ford Motor 24 Unlock company profile
Baidu 21 Unlock company profile
Bayerische Motoren Werke 20 Unlock company profile
Robert Bosch Stiftung 13 Unlock company profile
Chery Automobile 10 Unlock company profile
Zhejiang Geely Holding Group 9 Unlock company profile
Denso 9 Unlock company profile
Subaru 7 Unlock company profile
BYD 6 Unlock company profile
Mitsubishi Electric 6 Unlock company profile
Nissan Motor 5 Unlock company profile
Guangzhou Xiaopeng Automobile Technology 5 Unlock company profile
Hyundai Mobis 5 Unlock company profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Toyota Motor is a key player in the speech recognition techniques innovation area. Toyota and Google Cloud announced an expanded partnership that brings together Toyota and Lexus’s next-generation audio multimedia systems and Google Cloud’s AI-based speech services. The future vehicle-native Speech On-Device will enable voice requests to be assessed directly by vehicles’ multimedia system processors, without the need for internet connectivity. Honda Motor, Hyundai Motor, Ford Motor, Baidu, and Porsche Automobil are some of the other key players.

To further understand how artificial intelligence is disrupting the automotive industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Automotive.


GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.