The construction industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation, with activity driven by an increased focus on environmental sustainability and workplace safety, and the growing importance of technologies such as the Internet-of-Things (IoT) and robotics as well as higher quality construction products and materials. In the last three years alone, there have been over 248,000 patents filed and granted in the construction industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Innovation in Construction: Electrochromic slat blinds.
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.
80+ innovations will shape the construction industry
According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which plots the S-curve for the construction industry using innovation intensity models built on over 179,000 patents, there are 80+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.
Within the emerging innovation stage, mullion-transom curtain walls is a disruptive technology that is in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. Heat-insulated glazing panels, drainage gully grating, and acoustic ceiling panels are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas are abrasion-resistant decorative flooring, and road construction milling tool, which are now well established in the industry.
Innovation S-curve for the construction industry
Electrochromic slat blinds are a key innovation area in construction
Electrochromic slat blinds are a type of window covering that uses electrochromic material that can change its transparency when an electrical current is applied. The electrochromic material can be controlled to determine the amount of light to enter the room and in many cases, no power source is needed to control light saturation.
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 10 companies, spanning technology vendors, established construction companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of electrochromic slat blinds.
Key players in electrochromic slat blinds – a disruptive innovation in the construction 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 electrochromic slat blinds
|Company||Total patents (2010 - 2021)||Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies|
|View||133||Unlock company profile|
|Cardinal Glass Industries||48||Unlock company profile|
|Compagnie de Saint-Gobain||41||Unlock company profile|
|AGC||15||Unlock company profile|
|KGIC Merger||14||Unlock company profile|
|RavenBrick||14||Unlock company profile|
|Halio||9||Unlock company profile|
|Furcifer||8||Unlock company profile|
|Vinci||8||Unlock company profile|
|Springs Window Fashions||6||Unlock company profile|
Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics
View is the leading filer in electrochromic slat blinds. The company is one of the world leaders in glass manufacturing and smart glass using electrochromic technology. View's dynamic glass can give direct control of the amount of heat and lighting entering a building. One example of View’s patents integrates the smart glass blind system into a building management system, which can allow for residential and commercial buildings to reduce energy waste and glare.
In terms of application diversity, Furcifer is among the leaders in the pack, along with Vinci. By means of geographic reach, Springs Window Fashions holds the top position, followed by Compagnie de Saint-Gobain and RavenBrick.
To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the construction industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Construction.