The power industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation. Activity is driven by the need for power infrastructure improvement, increased efficiency and productivity, and optimisation of the power distribution network and growing importance of technologies such as advanced metering infrastructure, big data and digitalisation of distribution infrastructure. In the last three years alone, there have been over 439,000 patents filed and granted in the power industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Internet of Things in Power: Smart grid network protocols. Buy the report here.

Smarter leaders trust GlobalData

According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which uses over 83,000 patents to anlayse innovation intensity for the power industry, there are 90+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Smart grid network protocols is a key innovation area in Internet of Things

Smart grid network protocols refer mostly to Internet Protocol-based networks in smart grid communications for identification of address of systems and devices. An IP-based communication protocol or network protocols delivers reliability, network flexibility and security to smart grid.

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 30+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established power companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of smart grid network protocols.

Key players in smart grid network protocols – a disruptive innovation in the power industry

‘Application diversity’ measures the number of different applications identified for each relevant patent. It broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.

‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of different countries each relevant patent is registered in. It reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.

Patent volumes related to smart grid network protocols

Company Total patents (2021 - 2023) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Itron 110 Unlock Company Profile
Signify 38 Unlock Company Profile
Corinex Communications 30 Unlock Company Profile
Enel 30 Unlock Company Profile
Qualcomm 22 Unlock Company Profile
State Grid Corporation of China 21 Unlock Company Profile
Chargepoint 20 Unlock Company Profile
Trilliant Holdings 18 Unlock Company Profile
Cpi Integration Holdings 15 Unlock Company Profile
Sense Labs 14 Unlock Company Profile
V2Green 14 Unlock Company Profile
Kerlink 11 Unlock Company Profile
LG 11 Unlock Company Profile
Elbex Video 10 Unlock Company Profile
Valmont Industries 10 Unlock Company Profile
AT&T 10 Unlock Company Profile
Honeywell International 10 Unlock Company Profile
Microchip Technology 10 Unlock Company Profile
Miitors 9 Unlock Company Profile
Toyota Motor 9 Unlock Company Profile
Schneider Electric 9 Unlock Company Profile
Consert 8 Unlock Company Profile
Duke Energy 8 Unlock Company Profile
Savant Systems 7 Unlock Company Profile
NEC 7 Unlock Company Profile
GS Yuasa 6 Unlock Company Profile
SHYFT Power Solutions 6 Unlock Company Profile
Electro Industries/GaugeTech 6 Unlock Company Profile
LS Electric 5 Unlock Company Profile
CommScope Holding 5 Unlock Company Profile
Toshiba 5 Unlock Company Profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Enel and Schneider Electric are leading patent filters in smart grid network protocols. In September 2021, Enel unveiled its company Gridspertise, a company dedicated to digital transformation of power grids. The company is focused to deliver metering and grid edge digitalisation, network infrastructure digitalisation and field operations digitalisation. While Schneider Electric’s comprehensive smart grid solutions promises effective, trustworthy grid management and monitoring. The company is adopting best practices to create a smart grid network model. This real-time model network will enable utilities to implement smart grid strategies such as managing demand and integrating renewable energy sources. Schneider Electric has built this model in an Advanced Distribution Management System (ADMS) based on accurate and up-to-date information of the distribution network infrastructure.

To further understand how Internet of Things is disrupting the power industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Internet of Things in Power (2021).

Data Insights


The gold standard of business intelligence.

Blending expert knowledge with cutting-edge technology, GlobalData’s unrivalled proprietary data will enable you to decode what’s happening in your market. You can make better informed decisions and gain a future-proof advantage over your competitors.


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.