The automotive industry continues to be a hotbed of patent innovation. Activity in Internet of Things (IoT)-enabled vehicle doors is driven by convenience, connectivity, user experience, safety and security, and growing importance of technologies such as global positioning system (GPS), geofencing, and vehicle-to-everything (V2X). In the last three years alone, there have been over 1.7 million patents filed and granted in the automotive industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Internet of Things in automotive: IoT vehicle doors. Buy the report here.

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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 stabilizing 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 automotive industry

According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which plots the S-curve for the automotive industry using innovation intensity models built on over one million patents, there are 300+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Within the emerging innovation stage, LiDAR scanners, smart automotive lighting, and autonomous steering are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. Vehicle sensor network, AV tire health monitoring, and collision avoidance systems are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among the maturing innovation areas are remote trip monitoring and smart speed governors, which are now well established in the industry.

Innovation S-curve for Internet of Things in the automotive industry

IoT vehicle doors is a key innovation area in Internet of Things

IoT-enabled vehicle doors involve the incorporation of IoT technology within the structure of vehicle doors, allowing for automated management and surveillance. This entails the utilization of a diverse range of sensors and electronic components to detect objects or barriers, calculate distances, and govern the operation of vehicle doors, with the overarching goal of elevating the convenience, safety, and security associated with entering and exiting vehicles.

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 30+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established automotive companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of IoT vehicle doors.

Key players in IoT vehicle doors – a disruptive innovation in the automotive industry

‘Application diversity’ measures the number of applications identified for each patent. It broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.  

‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of countries each patent is registered in. It reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’. 

Patent volumes related to IoT vehicle doors

Company Total patents (2021 - 2023) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Assaloy 131 Unlock Company Profile
Otis Worldwide 24 Unlock Company Profile
GEZE 57 Unlock Company Profile
Alps Alpine 25 Unlock Company Profile
Magna International 163 Unlock Company Profile
Tata Motors 36 Unlock Company Profile
Toyota Motor 59 Unlock Company Profile
Johnson Electric 99 Unlock Company Profile
Acek Desarrollo y Gestion Industrial 48 Unlock Company Profile
Tokai Rika 37 Unlock Company Profile
Hi-Lex 76 Unlock Company Profile
Robert Bosch Stiftung 153 Unlock Company Profile
MITSUBA 186 Unlock Company Profile
Beacon Roofing Supply 41 Unlock Company Profile
Hyundai Motor 103 Unlock Company Profile
Aisin 282 Unlock Company Profile
Nidec 68 Unlock Company Profile
Honda Motor 64 Unlock Company Profile
Dormakaba 56 Unlock Company Profile
Porsche Automobil 64 Unlock Company Profile
General Motors 26 Unlock Company Profile
Nabtesco 46 Unlock Company Profile
Bayerische Motoren Werke 30 Unlock Company Profile
Bekaert 29 Unlock Company Profile
Denso 176 Unlock Company Profile
Montagu Private Equity 171 Unlock Company Profile
BorgWarner 28 Unlock Company Profile
Mitsui Mining & Smelting 51 Unlock Company Profile
Continental 42 Unlock Company Profile
Kia 62 Unlock Company Profile
Ford Motor 100 Unlock Company Profile
Brose Fahrzeugteile 622 Unlock Company Profile
Stellantis 29 Unlock Company Profile
Kiekert 28 Unlock Company Profile
U-Shin Deutschland Zugangssysteme 50 Unlock Company Profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Brose Fahrzeugteile is one of the leading patent filers in IOT vehicle doors. The company’s IoT vehicle doors are designed to provide keyless entry and exit, with the doors automatically unlocking and locking when the owner approaches or moves away from the vehicle. This is often achieved through smartphone apps, key fobs, or biometric authentication methods. Aisin and Magna International are some of the other key patent filers in this space.

In terms of application diversity, Johnson Electric leads the pack, while Tokai Rika and MITSUBA stood in the second and third positions, respectively. By means of geographic reach, Tata Motors held the top position, followed by Bekaert and Johnson Electric.

To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the automotive industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Internet of Things (IoT) in Automotive.

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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