Human is the most intelligent species among all the living creatures. Human has evolved over time, starting from discovering fire during early age, till now it is continuously evolving. Creations and Inventions made by the human race have eased our lives. One such creation is Artificial Intelligence. The term Artificial Intelligence means intelligence which is not natural. It is the result of a complex machine learning algorithm that enables the computer to learn from its experiences and evolve over time.
The use of AI in Image Processing has been increasing with time. Earlier, in Image processing or editing, the photographer or the photo editing professionals use to correct various parameters of an image in order to make it visually impressive. This requires a lot of technical knowledge and skills along with expert judgement in analyzing that the image is good enough. With the advent of AI in image processing, very less or we can say almost no technical knowledge and skills are needed. Fantastic looking processed images can be made just with a click. The AI algorithm is structured in such a way that it can automatically detect and edit an image.
Fig. 1 Priority patent application filing trend
While AI came into trend much early, it was only after 2014 that prominent innovation in Image Processing using AI actually started. After 2014, the priority patent application filing has been increasing ever since and reached the highest mark of 5,837 total applications. Also, the priority filing count for the year 2019 can be expected to overshoot the priority filing count of 2018, as some of the patent applications filed in 2019 are yet to be published. It is worth to mention here that in the last five years the priority application filings have increased with a CAGR 84.84%.
What accounts for this sudden increase in the number of patent applications?
In China, over 13,000 priority patent applications were filed in the domain whereas, in the United States, the number of priority patent applications filed were less than one-fourth of the applications filed in China. This shows that the US is way behind China in the innovation in the domain. China can be regarded as the world leader in the domain of AI Image Processing. On digging a little deeper, it is observed that of the huge number of patent applications filed in the domain in China, a majority of them are filed by educational institutions of China. The top assignees of the domain are Chinese universities which indicates that a significant amount of research in the domain is going on in Chinese universities. Surprisingly, the top assignee in the domain of AI Image Processing is not a corporate entity but a Chinese University named Xidian University with a portfolio of 327 patent families.