The medical devices industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation, with activity driven by increased need for homecare, preventative treatments, early diagnosis, reducing patient recovery times and improving outcomes, as well as a growing importance in technologies such as machine learning, augmented reality, 5G and digitalisation. In the last three years alone, there have been over 450,000 patents filed and granted in the medical devices industry. , according to GlobalData’s report on Artificial Intelligence in Medical Devices: Mood sensing AR/VR interfaces.

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.

150+ innovations will shape the medical devices industry

According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which plots the S-curve for the medical devices industry using innovation intensity models built on over 550,000 patents, there are 150+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Within the emerging innovation stage, AI-assisted radiology, motion artefact analysis, and treatment evaluation models are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. MRI image smoothing, AI-assisted EHR/EMR, and AI-assisted CT imaging are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas are computer-assisted surgeries and 3D endoscopy, which are now well established in the industry. 

Innovation S-curve for artificial intelligence in the medical devices industry

Mood sensing AR/VR interfaces is a key innovation area in artificial intelligence

Mood sensing or emotion sensing augmented reality/ virtual reality (AR/VR) devices include multiple sensors such as electroencephalography (EEG) to capture neuro-signals that can be interpreted to identify behavioural and physiological responses of users. These devices could be useful in areas such as mental health treatment and pain management.

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 medical devices companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of mood sensing AR/VR interfaces.

Key players in mood sensing AR/VR interfaces – a disruptive innovation in the medical devices industry

‘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 mood sensing AR/VR interfaces

Company Total patents (2010 - 2021) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Samsung Group 97 Unlock company profile
Sony Group 48 Unlock company profile
Immersion 28 Unlock company profile
Panasonic 21 Unlock company profile
Olympus 20 Unlock company profile
Koninklijke Philips 19 Unlock company profile
Xperi Holding 19 Unlock company profile
Intuitive Surgical 18 Unlock company profile
Life Corp 16 Unlock company profile
Johnson & Johnson 15 Unlock company profile
Huawei Investment & Holding 14 Unlock company profile
Xiaomi 12 Unlock company profile
Magic Leap 11 Unlock company profile
Intel 11 Unlock company profile
General Motors 10 Unlock company profile
Bracco 10 Unlock company profile
Denso 9 Unlock company profile
InCube Labs 9 Unlock company profile
Beijing Electronics Holding 8 Unlock company profile
Meta Platforms 8 Unlock company profile
Looxid Labs 8 Unlock company profile
InteraXon 8 Unlock company profile
Hi 7 Unlock company profile
International Business Machines 7 Unlock company profile
Nihon Kohden 7 Unlock company profile
Mitsubishi Electric 7 Unlock company profile
Hewlett Packard Enterprise 7 Unlock company profile
Medtronic 6 Unlock company profile
Neurable 6 Unlock company profile
Shenzhen Goodix Technology 6 Unlock company profile
F. Hoffmann-La Roche 5 Unlock company profile
Sleep Number 5 Unlock company profile
LG 5 Unlock company profile
SRI International 5 Unlock company profile
Alphabet 5 Unlock company profile
Huizhou TCL Mobile Communication 5 Unlock company profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Samsung Group is one of the lead patent filers in the area of mood-sensing AR/VR interfaces. Other leading patent filers in the area include Immersion, Sony Group, and Xperi Holding.

In terms of application diversity, Medtronic leads the pack, followed by Xperi Holding and Life Corp. By means of geographic reach, Magic Leap held the top spot, followed by Xiami and Alphabet in the second and third spots, respectively.

The use of VR and AR in mood sensing has the potential to improve pain management during certain medical procedures. VR immersive experience is known to result in patients experiencing lower levels of pain and distress. Mood-based sensing has the potential to provide feedback to surgeons during procedures carried out under local rather than general anaesthesia, and allow adjustment of the procedure as necessary. Reduced use of pharmacological anaesthetic will lead to less contraindications and better patient outcomes. Improved mood sensing is also useful for AI-enabled health bots, giving better feedback to patients to imitate so-called bedside manner and empathy.

To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the medical devices industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Medical Devices.


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.