SEOUL, June 8 (Korea Bizwire) – With the soaring popularity of 360-degree cameras, there have been a surging number of patent applications for new devices, systems, and application technology related to omnidirectional cameras.
According to the Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO), the average annual number of patent applications related to omnidirectional cameras was 65 from 2011 to 2015, which was an 88 percent increase from the previous five-year figure (2006 to 2010). The 2015 number was particularly high with a total of 90 applications.
Omnidirectional camera research and development can be divided into hardware, image processing, and application system technologies. The number of patents for application systems, in particular, increased by 160 percent in the past five years, whereas hardware and image processing patents increased by less than 40 percent.
Among application systems, the most popular were vehicle-related content production systems, primarily for use in VR.
The number of vehicle-related patents increased by over 700 percent from nine (2006 to 2010) to 73 (2011 to 2015), and content production by more than 200 percent from 11 to 36.
“With the popularization of head-mounted displays, demand for omnidirectional cameras for VR content production will increase,” said a KIPO official. “It’s a whole new profit sector for the stagnant camera industry, and we expect heightened competition for technological developments. There’s a need for more strategic intellectual property management.”
By Joseph Shin (firstname.lastname@example.org)