Across agriculture, automotive, healthcare, and beyond, IBM’s inventors filed a record 8,088 patents in the U.S. in 2016, cementing the company’s top spot on the patent charts for the 24th year in a row.
For the record, that amounts to 22 patents granted each day.
More than 2,700 of these patents are related to cognitive computing, machine learning and the cloud – critical areas for the company behind Watson.
Of the over 8,000 patents, here are a few examples of what the IBM team came up with in ’16:
US Patent #9,447,448: A system to use drone vehicles to survey, analyze and measure microbial contaminations in farms and hospitals.
US Patent #9,384,661: A method of trip planning that accounts for your cognitive state. If you’re sleep-deprived or just stressed, it suggests a less road-rage inducing route.
US Patent #9,374,649: A smart hearing aid that adjusts to the user’s specific needs. For instance, it could be trained to amplify specific voices or crucial sounds, like a smoke alarm.
This push to innovation is only the beginning of what these new technologies will be doing in the enterprise space: watching makers use these patented technologies in exciting new ways is in the very near future.