The automotive industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation, with activity driven by growing EV adoption rates and rapid installation of electric vehicle (EV) charging networks, and the growing importance of technologies such as sensing technology and advanced connectivity. 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 Internet of Things in Automotive: V2G networks. 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.

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, acoustic vehicle signalling devices, autonomous parking, and brake pedal sensors are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. Vehicle head up displays (HUDs), smart light dimmers, and automatic actuated vehicle doors are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas are road slope estimation and V2V distance monitoring, which are now well established in the industry.

Innovation S-curve for IoT in the automotive industry

V2G networks is a key innovation area in IoT

Vehicle to Grid (V2G) network is a very important component of a smart grid as it proposes new services that will enable the optimisation of both supply and demand of energy. It offers a mobile distributed capacity of battery storage for minimising the dependency on non-renewable energy sources.

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 120+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established automotive companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of V2G networks.

Key players in V2G networks – 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 V2G networks

Company Total patents (2010 - 2021) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Toyota Motor 751 Unlock company profile
Honda Motor 313 Unlock company profile
Gogoro 212 Unlock company profile
WiTricity 208 Unlock company profile
Panasonic 181 Unlock company profile
Mitsubishi Electric 161 Unlock company profile
BYD 156 Unlock company profile
Ford Motor 116 Unlock company profile
Porsche Automobil Holding 97 Unlock company profile
Sony Group 95 Unlock company profile
Denso 94 Unlock company profile
Siemens 87 Unlock company profile
NEC 85 Unlock company profile
Qualcomm 84 Unlock company profile
Hitachi 82 Unlock company profile
Chargepoint 75 Unlock company profile
Renault 67 Unlock company profile
Wobben Properties 67 Unlock company profile
Murata Manufacturing 66 Unlock company profile
Hyundai Motor Group 64 Unlock company profile
Robert Bosch Stiftung 62 Unlock company profile
Causam Energy 62 Unlock company profile
Nissan Motor 55 Unlock company profile
General Motors 54 Unlock company profile
Cpi Integration Holdings 47 Unlock company profile
Kia 46 Unlock company profile
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries 43 Unlock company profile
Mercedes-Benz Group 38 Unlock company profile
Mitsubishi Motors 38 Unlock company profile
LS Electric 36 Unlock company profile
International Business Machines 33 Unlock company profile
Bayerische Motoren Werke 33 Unlock company profile
Toshiba 33 Unlock company profile
AES 32 Unlock company profile
E.ON 31 Unlock company profile
Continental 29 Unlock company profile
V2Green 28 Unlock company profile
IHI 27 Unlock company profile
Havelaar Canada Industrial R & D Laboratory 26 Unlock company profile
Twenty First Century Utilities 25 Unlock company profile
Huawei Investment Holding 24 Unlock company profile
Hydro-Quebec 23 Unlock company profile
Sumitomo Electric Industries 22 Unlock company profile
Tesla 22 Unlock company profile
Emerging Automotive 22 Unlock company profile
Nuvve 20 Unlock company profile
Schneider Electric 19 Unlock company profile
CEA 17 Unlock company profile
Nokia 17 Unlock company profile
Proterra 13 Unlock company profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Toyota is a key player in the V2G networks innovation area. Toyota announced a new partnership with Oncor, the largest transmission and distribution utility company in Texas, to explore the benefits of V2G technology. Its new vehicle-to-grid programme will focus on the benefits of V2G technology for both customers and the energy grid as the ability of EVs to send power to and from the car’s battery to the grid has made them powerful backup energy options. Honda, WiTricity, Gogoro, and Panasonic are some of the other key players.

To further understand how IoT is 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.