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Who are the leading innovators in AR-guided surgical navigation for the medical devices industry?

According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which uses over 155,000 patents to analyze innovation intensity for the medical devices industry, there are 30+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

AR-guided surgical navigation is a key innovation area in virtual and augmented reality

AR-guided surgical navigation is a technology that uses augmented reality to provide real-time guidance and visualization to surgeons during surgical procedures. AR overlays digital information onto the surgeon’s view of the patient, allowing them to see things such as 3D models of internal organs and surgical tools in real-time.

GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each AR-guided surgical navigation and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 50+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established medical devices companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of AR-guided surgical navigation.

Key players in AR-guided surgical navigation – a disruptive innovation in the medical devices 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 AR-guided surgical navigation

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Smith & Nephew and Stryker are two of the leading patent filers in AR-guided surgical navigation. Some other key patent filers in the field include Magic Leap, Globus Medical, and Johnson & Johnson.

In terms of application diversity, International Business Machines (IBM) leads the pack, while Roper Technologies and Magic Leap stood in the second and third positions, respectively. By means of geographic reach, Smith & Nephew held the top position, followed by Aris MD and Seiko Epson.

AR-guided navigation is poised for growth due to its potential to enhance precision, offer personalized treatment, enable minimal invasion, and improve surgical training. Furthermore, remote assistance allows experts to collaborate and improve the quality of care. Finally, as AR surgical navigation evolves, it may become more cost effective, making this advanced technology more accessible to hospitals and other healthcare institutes.

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


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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.

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