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WIPO: Russia among Top 10 in the Number of Patent Filings Related to Vision Assistive Technologies (1998 - 2019)

 

The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) has published a report entitled WIPO Technology Trends 2021: Assistive Technologies which focuses on developments that help people to compensate for mobility, vision and other impairments. The report shows that innovations, ranging from small improvements in existing products to cutting-edge developments in frontier technologies, can greatly improve the lives of persons with functional limitations. These technologies help them overcome daily obstacles in navigating their environments, communicating, working and living independently.

According to the Report over 1 billion people currently need assistive technology — a figure expected to double in the next decade as populations age. At the same time, consumer electronics and assistive products are converging, meaning even greater commercialization of these technologies.

The report used patent and other data to provide solid, factual evidence on innovation in the global assistive tech landscape, creating a knowledge base to inform and support business leaders, researchers and policy-makers in their decision-making. It finds that China, the U.S., Germany, Japan and the Republic of Korea are the five main origins of innovation in assistive technology.

The authors of the Report also noted that top players in vision assistive technologies are major U.S., European, Russian and Israeli optics manufacturers.

According to the Report, the Federal Service for Intellectual Property (Rospatent) ranked seventh in terms of the number of patent applications (448) filed between 1998 and 2019 in the area of new vision recovery technologies.

 

 

The U.S. (1665), followed by WIPO (1079) and China (978) are leading in the number of patent applications in this field. The top five also include the European Patent Office (813) and Japan (582).

The two Russian institutions — the Moscow-based S. Fyodorov Eye Microsurgery Federal State Institution and the IRTC Eye Microsurgery Ekaterinburg Center— are among the leading Top 30 patent applicants by the number of patent families first filed for patent protection from 1998 to 2019 for emerging vision assistive technology. Most of the developments of the leading applicants relate to retinal prostheses (also known as artificial silicon retinas) and drug delivery through intraocular lenses (IOLs).

Notably, the S. Fyodorov Eye Microsurgery Federal State Institution leads with a large margin (159 applications) in the top universities or public research organizations within the top 100 patent applicants in conventional (top) and emerging (bottom) assistive technology by the number of patent families first filed for patent protection from 1998 to 2019. The second is the Shanghai Jiao Tong University (China), with 66 applications.

 

 

Rospatent ranks 11th in the top 20 patent offices by the number of patent applications filed for patent protection from 1998 to 2019 for conventional mobility assistive technology. Furthermore, Germany (40%), Spain (40$) and Russia (35%) registered the highest annual growth rates for patent applications in this field filed from 2013 to 2017.

Smart prosthetics are the most common category for applications in Germany (52 patent families, 27% applications), while exoskeletons are the most common category for applications in Russia (31 patent families, 44% of applications) and Spain (23 patent families, 47% applications). One of the leading producers of orthoses is the Russian Energiya Rocket Cosmic Corporation.

Today, assistive technologies, developed for people with functional limitations, are increasingly used in consumer products. This marks an important milestone in the innovation process. In particular, assistive technologies are converging with general-purpose electronics and medical technologies. For example, bone conduction technology is often used in headphones for running. According to WIPO, only one in ten people in the world now has access to the necessary assistive devices. We hope that in the coming years the situation will change for the better, noted Head of Rospatent Mr. Grigory Ivliev.

Full text of the Report

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