The insurance industry continues to be a hotbed of patent innovation. Activity is driven by digitalization, personalization, and growing importance of technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of Things, and cybersecurity in insurance documentation and data analytics, predictive risk assessment, fraud detection, and smart policy management. In the last three years alone, there have been over 17,000 patents filed and granted in the insurance industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Drones in insurance: property assessment drones. Buy the report here.
According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which uses over 70,000 patents to analyze innovation intensity for the insurance industry, there are 20+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.
Property assessment drones is a key innovation area in drones
Property assessment drones refer to unmanned aerial vehicles equipped with sensors and cameras used for capturing images and data of buildings, structures, and properties. These drones assist insurers in identifying and assessing property damage, which helps in identifying risks associated with the property for accurate premium calculation, as well as estimating financial damage to the insured property during claim settlement.
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 270+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established insurance companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of property assessment drones.
Key players in property assessment drones – a disruptive innovation in the insurance 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 property assessment drones
|Company||Total patents (2010 - 2022)||Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies|
|State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance||813||Unlock Company Profile|
|Memjet Technology||215||Unlock Company Profile|
|The Allstate||207||Unlock Company Profile|
|INRIX||124||Unlock Company Profile|
|Alibaba Group||111||Unlock Company Profile|
|Alphabet||102||Unlock Company Profile|
|Clearlake Capital Group||94||Unlock Company Profile|
|Pictometry International||89||Unlock Company Profile|
|The Toronto-Dominion Bank||85||Unlock Company Profile|
|Ping An Insurance (Group)||70||Unlock Company Profile|
|The Hartford Financial Services Group||60||Unlock Company Profile|
|Intel||56||Unlock Company Profile|
|USAA||54||Unlock Company Profile|
|Ford Motor||35||Unlock Company Profile|
|Advanced New Technologies||33||Unlock Company Profile|
|The Travelers||32||Unlock Company Profile|
|International Business Machines||32||Unlock Company Profile|
|Aon||31||Unlock Company Profile|
|CoreLogic||30||Unlock Company Profile|
|Yembo||29||Unlock Company Profile|
|Sonos||29||Unlock Company Profile|
|Lear||26||Unlock Company Profile|
|Swiss Re Asia Pacific||26||Unlock Company Profile|
|Accenture||26||Unlock Company Profile|
|Qomplx||23||Unlock Company Profile|
|Black Hills IP||23||Unlock Company Profile|
|Booking||22||Unlock Company Profile|
|VeriFone||22||Unlock Company Profile|
|Owl Cameras||21||Unlock Company Profile|
|Munchener Ruckversicherungs-Gesellschaft Aktiengesellschaft (Munich Re)||20||Unlock Company Profile|
|Thomson Reuters Global Resources||18||Unlock Company Profile|
|Theator||18||Unlock Company Profile|
|MetLife||17||Unlock Company Profile|
|EagleView Technologies||16||Unlock Company Profile|
|Digital Envoy||16||Unlock Company Profile|
|NetraDyne||16||Unlock Company Profile|
|Sensata Technologies||15||Unlock Company Profile|
|LG||14||Unlock Company Profile|
|State Grid of China||13||Unlock Company Profile|
|Verizon Patent And Licensing||13||Unlock Company Profile|
|Nio||12||Unlock Company Profile|
|Samsung Life Insurance||12||Unlock Company Profile|
|Nokia||12||Unlock Company Profile|
|Toyota Motor||11||Unlock Company Profile|
|Toshiba||11||Unlock Company Profile|
|Microsoft||11||Unlock Company Profile|
|Koch Industries||11||Unlock Company Profile|
|Swiss Re||11||Unlock Company Profile|
|Loveland Innovations||10||Unlock Company Profile|
|Zendrive||10||Unlock Company Profile|
Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics
Among the companies innovating in property assessment drones, State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance (State Farm) is one of the leading patent filers. It filed several patents related to methods and systems of using autonomous and semi-autonomous image-capturing drones for inspecting insured properties and infrastructure. It also filed a patent for structural analysis using drone-generated 3D image data.
State Farm has been working with Virginia Tech to safely deploy drones for risk modeling and claims operations since 2018. It was granted permission by the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to fly drones over moving vehicles for insurance purposes at the end of 2020.
Memjet Technology, Allstate, and INRIX are some of the other leading patent filers in property assessment drones.
In terms of application diversity, Nio held the top position, while INRIX and Theator stood in second and third positions, respectively. By means of geographic reach, Memjet Technology leads the pack, followed by INRIX and Alphabet.
To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the insurance industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Insurance.