Innovation is vital in businesses because it allows companies to enter new markets more quickly and interact with developing markets more effectively. Both of which may lead to more opportunities, especially because what customers want and expect is continuously changing.
Because of this, companies have developed unique and innovative solutions that have captured the attention of millions all over the world. However, before we go through them, let us first understand why these innovations are important.
Why are innovative solutions necessary?
Innovative solutions are essential for companies because these innovations are capable of:
- Solving existing problems
- Generating business value for both the organizations and its customers
- Entering untapped markets
- Increasing brand awareness and recognition
- Gaining business traction
- Serving as an outlet of organizational brilliance and creativity
- Helping the market understand that the brand is capable of achieving remarkable milestones
- Symbolizing the strength and competitiveness of the business
- Integrating new technologies with market needs and demands
- Enlisting the brand at the forefront of its chosen industry, making it a pioneering innovator and an established market leader
In essence, innovative solutions allow companies to approach and handle challenges in a manner that develops enhancements in their internal system.
These improvements pave the way for organizations to solve problems, increase functionality, generate business value, and create potential solutions that customers are willing to pay for.
At some point, creating innovative solutions may entail financial investment and expenditure.
But keep in mind that according to a global innovation study conducted by the Booz & Company:
Most companies with the highest innovation success rates are not generally the greatest spenders.
Meaning, that what’s important instead is the ability to develop appropriate innovation capabilities that are aligned with the brand’s overall business strategy.
What are some examples of innovative solutions around the world?
The following are the top ten most innovative solutions that companies across the globe have created:
1. Energy-producing roads
Roads are usually recognized by many for their main purpose: a route that pedestrians and vehicles used for transportation and travel from point A to point B.
However, for TNO (Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research), Dyniqq (mobile equipment supplier), and Ooms Civiel (construction and infrastructure company):
The road can also function as solar panels that provide electricity which could power street lights, residences, and even the vehicles that use them.
Because of this bold and daring vision, the world’s first energy-generating bike lane was created.
For the “SolaRoad Kit” inventors, the upper surface of the road was the largest technological obstacle as it needed to be able to capture as much sunlight as conceivable while staying sturdy and damage-resistant.
A piece can build 10m² of SolaRoad, – a road that produces sufficient electricity to cover a typical household’s yearly electricity demands.
2. Water Filter Book
Statistics say that 3.4 million people die as a result of water-related ailments annually. But then, the greater issue is that the majority of these people are ignorant that the water they consume is actually harmful to drink.
Such issues were frowned upon but engineers and scientists from the University of Virginia’s Carnegie Mellon set out to provide a solution to both of these problems.
And so they came up with “The Drinkable Book™” – a literal guidebook that serves two functions:
- Educates people about safe drinking water, sanitation, and hygiene
- Prevents dangerous waterborne illnesses by allowing readers to generate clean, drinkable water from each page
The book’s pages are made of a novel form of coffee filter paper that’s embedded with silver nanoparticles that destroy pathogens like cholera, E.coli, and typhoid.
3. Bra that detects breast cancer
One of the most common cancers among women all over the world is breast cancer. EVA, an “auto-exploration bra” invented by Julián Ros Cant when he was only 17 years old, aims to detect breast cancer early and effectively.
The bra measures mammary color, texture, and temperature using 200 biosensors. These data are then analyzed using neural networks and special algorithms. The bra works via connection with the user’s smartphone.
Truly a unique product, the EVA bra provides a much more efficient and accurate diagnosis than self-examination checks.
4. Matching medicines and genomes
The majority of medical research and development is still carried out in a conventional, costly, and time-consuming manner.
To address this issue, the United Genomes Project (UGP) was founded. Through its open-source DNA database, the initiative employs open innovation to generate breakthrough medical discoveries in Africa.
Learning about diverse genomes is crucial since different drugs operate differently in your body based on your DNA. Traditional medical research and development methods do not support individualized treatments, but the UGP does.
The UGP enables African medical experts and aspiring practitioners to generate innovative breakthroughs using open data.
The UGP was inspired by the fact that its inventor, Geoffrey Siwo, made a groundbreaking medical discovery using internet databases while still an undergraduate in Kenya.
5. Plastic Blocks for infrastructure
Peter Lewis, a New Zealand-based innovator, invented RePlast – a machine that transforms plastic waste into walls.
Using the RePlast machine, any type of plastic garbage may be transformed into a RePlast block. Unlike traditional concrete, the blocks do not require glue or any other adhesive.
RePlast blocks, which are now shaped like normal concrete blocks, may be altered to a range of forms and densities. Because it is modular, the system is portable. It can run on either gas or electricity and does not require sorting or cleaning.
Another notable organization for turning plastic into infrastructure blocks is ByFusion – a firm based in the United States that converts 100 percent plastic waste into alternative building materials.
Innovative solutions like these can convert mountains of rubbish into valuable items, which is crucial in solving the world’s plastic waste problem.
6. Shoe Navigation System for Visually Impaired People
Honda is seeking to embed the power of technology into shoes with the intent of allowing visually impaired people to perceive the environment more easily.
Their “in-shoe navigation system” is a gadget that is connected to the user’s shoe and works in conjunction with their smartphone to assist them in locating a certain destination.
The technology incorporates two separate motion sensors – one for each shoe that vibrates to indicate a certain direction. Whichever foot vibrates, it urges you to turn that way. If both feet vibrate at the same moment, the user should continue walking.
The device will not interfere with the wearer’s ability to utilize a cane or hear cues in their environment. According to Honda, the item will be available in March 2023.
7. Edible utensils
Bakeys, a company based in India, has started the cutlery revolution. They created the first single-use edible spoons, forks, and chopsticks by utilizing a variety of flours that may be consumed after their intended usage.
It is understandable that consumers would want the “excellent food” experience to extend to the edible cutlery without worrying about their health. Therefore, the company is manufacturing these utensils using rice, wheat, and sorghum.
It is making sure that every ingredient used is fully vegan, free of preservatives, trans-fat-free, and dairy-free. In addition, consumers are assured that the company is operating in accordance with the principles of fair trade by constantly working on their certifications and awards.
What drove Bakeys to manufacture edible utensils is the fact that within a year, the United States could use about 40 billion single-use plastic utensils, and this figure rises up to 16 times globally.
This is the unfortunate reality of how single-use cutlery impacts the overall trash generated by millions of fast-food restaurants in our fast-paced world. This is why Bakeys edible utensils are a remarkable breakthrough that altered the way we eat and think about waste forever.
8. Solar panels for preventing water evaporation
Solar energy systems are efficient and eco-friendly. But they usually need a considerable amount of land. This is a huge challenge, especially in India, which is also one of the world’s most populous countries, with 17.7% of the global population.
Because big areas of land are scarce, energy companies are focusing their efforts on placing solar panels offshore in reservoirs, on walls, and even above rivers and irrigation canals.
Solar plants on canals have two significant advantages: efficient, low-cost land usage and decreased canal water evaporation.
9. First Rollable TV
LG has long been a famous household brand. Despite announcing its intention to quit making smartphones in April 2021, the company has developed the Signature OLED R, the world’s first rollable television.
This TV is one-of-a-kind because it employs a novel sort of screen that can be folded up like a newspaper. Since this revolutionary innovation, the company has grown more appealing to customers, as its efforts to solve the issue of television mobility have been much appreciated.
10. Purification of water through aquaponics
Aquaponics refers to a technique in which farmed fish feces provides nutrients to hydroponically grown plants while also purifying the water.
The Aquaponics design works with fishes devouring food and excreting waste, which is then transformed into nutrients that the plants may utilize by helpful microorganisms. Plants assist to filter water by eating these nutrients.
This innovative idea has had a positive influence on food and water conservation at a time when world hunger and water scarcity are critical issues.
Develop a clear purpose for your innovation
All of these innovative solutions are making a difference in people’s lives. These advances have improved and transformed challenges into progress, making lives more pleasant, convenient, healthier, and safer.
Without innovation in the workplace, no company will ever be able to achieve major growth and business revolutions.
And one critical step in producing an innovative solution is to develop a clear purpose for innovation, which will help you decide and establish all the other necessary components of your innovation process such as your methods, tools, equipment, and strategies.
Turn your organization into an effective innovation engine today. Download our innovation ebook here to learn more.