We recently profiled the patents issued to Samsung (KRX:005930) by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, finding a great deal of innovation in home networks and robotics. Today, we return to the South Korean conglomerate to survey its patent applications and learn more about the innovations we can expect from this company.
Innovation at Samsung is supported by a number of programs and initiatives put in place by the corporation, such as the Samsung Strategy & Innovation Center. This group directs a fund of $100 million dollars for research and development investment for innovations in areas like digital health management and the Internet of Things. The company’s R&D has been sliding backwards in the eyes of some industry pundits, although those same critics are willing to maintain that Samsung still maintains a leading role in consumer electronics innovation, owing in large part to corporate investment in IoT development.
Samsung’s position as an industry leader in consumer electronics was reinforced last November when the company received 36 innovation awards in 10 different categories in advance of the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show. Samsung has been slowly releasing details about the Galaxy S6, which will be the company’s new flagship smartphone when it’s unveiled in March. The corporation also turns heads for its home appliance innovations, such as the Active Wash washing machine unit which includes a built-in sink for pre-treating clothes and washing delicates.
Companies of the Samsung Group filed 6,837 patent applications with the USPTO during 2014, according to our research using Innography’s patent analysis tools. The text cluster posted here shows that a great majority of those were focused on device innovations, including technologies focusing upon electronic, semiconductor and memory devices.
Medical Innovations Including Genetic Diagnoses and Stem Cell Therapies
There have been signs that Samsung is trying to wind down its operations in its medical device businesses, but we found plenty of patent applications filed with the USPTO indicating that healthcare innovation is still very important to this corporation. A technique for the genetic analysis of human subjects to test for diagnosing certain leukemias is featured by U.S. Patent Application No. 20150038360, titled Method for Multiplex-Detecting Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia Gene Using Cleavable Probe. The kit for detecting an e19a2 breakpoint of a BCR-ABL fusion gene claimed here contains five primer sets, each having a primer comprised of a specific nucleic acid. This kit provides for the early detection of chronic myelogenous leukemia, or CML, including rarer varieties of the disease. The extraction of even greater amounts of medical data from a patient’s genes is possible through the technology outlined within U.S. Patent Application No. 20150051095, filed under the title Method of Using DNA Structure. The patent application claims a method of using a DNA structure by forming a DNA structure including a plurality of spaces, attaching a DNA building block to the spaces, contacting the DNA building block with a clinical specimen and separating the DNA building block from the DNA structure. This method of DNA analysis for performing diagnoses allows for the reuse of a DNA structure, reducing the costs of providing resources for forming the DNA structure.
A stem cell treatment developed for those patients who have suffered from brain trauma or spinal cord injury is discussed within U.S. Patent Application No. 20150045298, which is titled Composition Including Stem Cell-Derived Microvesicles for Promoting Neurogenesis. This patent application claims a composition for promoting neurogenesis comprising stem cell-derived microvesicles, which have been derived from stem cells induced by ischemic stimuli, as an active ingredient. The invention results in a pharmaceutical composition for the treatment of neurological damage caused by physical damage or can be used to treat or prevent neurological diseases like Parkinson’s and Lou Gehrig’s diseases. The prevalence of developmental disorders in children who are overexposed to video contents from a variety of consumer electronics is addressed by the innovation described by U.S. Patent Application No. 20150051887, which is titled Apparatus and Method to Estimate a Degree of User Fatigue to Video Content. The apparatus that would be protected includes a feature value calculating unit to calculate feature values corresponding to image and sound features of a video content and a fatigue degree calculating unit that calculates a degree of user fatigue to the video content through the use of a fatigue degree estimation model. This system is capable of analyzing video viewer biometrics like blinking frequency or pupil movement to determine whether a viewer is emotionally fatigued from watching video content and generates a warning message in response.
Displaying Digital Content in Three Dimensions and Other Display Tech
3D imaging and display technologies being developed by Samsung are reaching towards being capable of immersing people in virtual reality environments of increasing complexity. We wanted to make sure to share a couple of patent applications in the area of three-dimensional imaging technology. A technology that allows viewers of 3D content to view content correctly while in a relaxed, reclined position is explained by U.S. Patent Application No. 20150035954, entitled Apparatus and Method for Adjusting Stereoscopic Images in Response to Head Roll. The stereoscopic display claimed here includes a sensor that detects head roll of a viewer and an image renderer coupled to the sensor that adjusts a 3D image according to a detected head roll. This innovation supports a more comfortable 3D viewing experience for those viewers who want to watch a 3D movie while lying down without sacrificing depth perception. A method for three-dimensional display that encourages greater interactivity with electronic devices is reflected by U.S. Patent Application No. 20150052425, titled Method of Searching for Page Using Three-Dimensional Manner in Portable Device and Portable Device for the Same. The patent application claims a method of searching for a page in a three dimensional manner by overlappingly displaying a plurality of pages in three dimensions, detecting a distance between the portable device and user input means, sequentially moving and displaying the pages according to the detected distance and displaying a selected page when detecting a movement of the user input means. This invention is intended to decrease the repetitiveness of touch inputs for touchscreen devices when a user is trying to browse through sequentially pictures in a gallery or pages in a document.
An innovation that takes advantage of television displays to provide added functionality for phone calls is disclosed by U.S. Patent Application No. 20150039308, which is titled Apparatus, Server, and Method for Providing Conversation Topic. The conversation topic providing method that would be protected involves converting voice data from a phone conversation into text, selecting a keyword from the text which indicates a user intention, obtaining information of interest with respect to the keyword and determining topics related to the keyword. This system enables a user to search for content through a television or computer without having to complete a manual text entry, analyzing voice data from a call instead to initiate a search operation. An improved touchscreen display for novel electronic devices is at the center of U.S. Patent Application No. 20150042598, filed under the title Flexible Touch Display Panel. The flexible touch display panel claimed here includes a display unit formed on a substrate, an encapsulation film formed to encapsulate a display unit and a touch film arranged on the display device which includes different pluralities of interconnected sensing electrodes which are both formed in the same layer yet electrically insulated from each other. This invention results in a touchscreen display panel which is bendable by providing a method to prevent cracks from forming at or spreading from a bending site.
Other Patent Applications of Note: From Solar Cells to Online Community Services
We’ll wrap up our coverage of Samsung innovation with a look at another group of patent applications featuring other eye-catching technologies. We’re always intrigued by advances in alternative energy generation and Samsung is looking to increase its IP portfolio in this field with U.S. Patent Application No. 20150040973, which is titled Light Transmission Type Two-Sided Solar Cell. The two-sided solar cell that would be protected includes sub-cells on a first side and a rear side of a transparent substrate, each sub-cell containing two electrodes and a photoactive layer; one of the electrodes on the rear side sub-cell is a reflection electrode which covers at least half of the area of a photoactive layer. This innovation provides for a high efficiency solar cell for solar energy collection which is transparent and can also serve as a window.
Better driver control of an industrial vehicle after that vehicle has experienced a power failure is reflected by U.S. Patent Application No. 20150051764, which is titled Apparatus and Method for Driving Vehicle. The patent application would protect a method of driving a vehicle by monitoring the vehicle’s power status and controlling the vehicle to travel at a speed corresponding to an acceleration command which is received as a power failure is detected. This technology would be incorporated on certain industrial trucks, specifically hybrid forklift trucks, to limit an increase of a driving speed responsive to a power failure, at which time an acceleration command to restrict acceleration relative to load power may not be processed.
Wearable technologies have been an area of consumer gadgetry that we’ve been keeping our eyes on here at IPWatchdog, so we were intrigued to see Samsung pursuing patents in this field, as is evidenced by U.S. Patent Application No. 20150049657, which is titled Apparatus, Method, and System for Low Power Wearable Wireless Devices. The method for operating an aggregator to transmit information to a user that would be protected by this patent application involves receiving information from at least one data source, selecting a transmission policy according to which the information is transmitted to a user and transmitting the information to a user. This technology addresses shortcomings in wearable gadgets, such as low battery life and large batteries, caused by the high power consumption of Bluetooth, WiFi or 3G communications used to transmit data to and from devices.
Finally, we were intrigued to learn more about a Samsung innovation for allowing members of online communities to more quickly determine content related to content being viewed, which is laid out within U.S. Patent Application No. 20150046470, which is titled Apparatus and Method for Providing Community Service. The patent application claims an apparatus for providing a community service which is made up of a content analysis unit that generates a plurality of content figures representing a plurality of pieces of content and generates connection relationships between the pluralities, a content management unit that sets a size value of an upper content figure and a content transmitter that transmits connection relationships and size data to a user terminal connecting to an online community. This innovation enables those browsing threads of posts in Internet communities to better identify the relationships between online contents at a glance and provide a service by separating mainstream and non-mainstream contents.