New Philips survey unveils worldwide innovation gap: only five out of ten people are satisfied with innovations currently available

Philips’ Meaningful Innovation Index examines satisfaction with current innovations by what is important in people’s lives

January 23, 2013


Almost three quarters of citizens worldwide expect future innovations to fundamentally change the way they live

More than half of people believe future innovations in medical technology will mean that serious health issues will not affect them

People of different ages share similar expectations: Nearly nine out of ten are looking for innovations that will help them to look after the health of their family






Amsterdam, The Netherlands – Royal Philips Electronics (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) released its “Meaningful Innovation Index ” today, during its participation at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. The Meaningful Innovation Index is a 5000-person, multi-country survey looking at people’s needs, attitudes and expectations regarding innovation. Based on responses from five key markets1, the survey shows that even with the recent advances in technology, there is huge appetite for innovations that will make a real difference in people’s everyday lives.


Philips’ Meaningful Innovation Index looked at satisfaction with current innovations with what is truly important in people’s lives and found that only 54% of people are satisfied with existing innovations in the areas they considered to be the most important to their lives. People’s preferences across age groups and various lifestages2 consistently point toward an ‘innovation gap’, indicating that there is room for companies to innovate in ten key areas of life: protecting the environment, saving money, stress relief, living independently as one ages, education, preventative health (preventing disease and illness), medical treatment, medical diagnosis, workplace efficiency and saving time. 


“Addressing the ‘innovation gap’ presents significant opportunities for companies,” said Jim Andrew, Philips Chief Strategy and Innovation Officer. “For Philips in particular, this drives us to introduce truly life-changing innovations to our customers and by doing so, help address some of the society’s great challenges.”

People believe innovation will bring better health in the future



Almost three-in-five (58%) of people believe future innovations in medical technology will mean they will not be affected by serious illness.

64% of people expect to be able to manage their own health better through technology.

The technology “generation gap” is more myth than fact— affinity to technology is similar across the age-groups



Both young (18-24) and old (+65) generations consistently rank the same five areas of life as being most important to them: being happy, sleeping well, comfortable home to live in, a sense of safety in home environment, and communication with friends and family.

67% of seniors (65+) felt that technology had made their lives better, close to 74% of youth (18-24) who feel the same way.

The importance of living independently does, as expected, increase as people get older but is a significant issue for all: 66% of seniors and 52% of youth are satisfied with products in this area.


Citizens worldwide have high expectations of future innovations to change the way they live



Across the markets, almost three quarters (72%) believe technology will improve energy efficiency in their homes.

64% of Chinese people feel that access to medical technology is important to living a long life, while only 27% of Russians agree.


Citizens in markets like China, Russia and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) generally call for improvements on current technology, or for the ability for them to own more of the devices that already exist in the market. For example, 81% of Americans are happy with products available that help them to stay active, compared to just 60% of people living in China. To better serve these citizens, this may involve delivering technology that can be scalable, or simply producing more cost-efficient technology.


“Innovation is the lifeblood of Philips and we are focused intently on improving the lives of people around the world by delivering meaningful innovations. By doing this, we will help countries improve their economic health and drive continual improvements in health and well-being of people on the planet,” concluded Jim Andrew.


Starting today, 23 January 2013, Philips is actively contributing to the international debate at the Annual World Economic Forum, taking place in Davos, Switzerland. Throughout the forum Philips will make a positive case for stimulating meaningful innovation at two levels: to improve people’s individual lives as well as to drive economic and societal prosperity.

Full survey results of The Meaningful Innovation Index are available on the Philips Center for Health and Well-being website,



Follow the conversation and updates from Davos on Philips

Twitter @PhilipsPR @PhilipsCenter @PhilipsHealth ( #PhilipsWEF,  #WEF,  #Davos,  @Davos)





¹ The Philips Innovation Index, a nationally representative survey, was carried out in 5 countries: China, The Netherlands, U.S.A., the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Russia, surveying approximately 1,000 respondents per market.
2 Lifestage of people surveyed across the markets examined the types of life events they have experienced, their age, their family and their economic situations, and their experience with technology. Accordingly, eight groups of people were identified across the five markets, with each group representing a different lifestage segment: Traditional Families, Young Up-and-Coming Techies, Techie Family-Oriented Seniors, Steady Empty Nesters, Affluent Techie Families, Struggling Mature Tech-Intermediates, Middle-Aged Non-Traditional Families, and Starting Out Non-Techies.



Philips' Meaningful Innovation Index Infographic

Philips' Meaningful Innovation Index Infographic

Our commitment to World Economic Forum:

Philips is Strategic Partner of the World Economic Forum to commit our company’s top executives and experts to play a leading role in close collaboration with our customers, partners and major stakeholders to improve the state of the world as this closely links with our company’s mission to improve people’s lives. In 2013 the following Philips Executives will participate in WEF: Frans van Houten, Deborah DiSanzo, Pieter Nota, Jim Andrew, Harry Hendriks

For further information, please contact:

Eeva Raaijmakers
Philips Corporate Communications
Tel: +31 612350597


About The Philips Meaningful Innovation Index

The Philips Meaningful Innovation Index is the latest in a series of Indices developed by The Philips Center for Health and Well-Being that will help us plan and develop appropriate solutions. A nationally representative survey was carried out in 5 countries: China, The Netherlands, U.S.A., the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Russia, surveying approximately 1,000 respondents per market. The survey looks at people’s affinity, experience, attitude towards technology – in other words, what does meaningful innovation mean to people.


About Royal Philips Electronics

Royal Philips Electronics (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) is a diversified health and well-being company, focused on improving people’s lives through meaningful innovation in the areas of Healthcare, Consumer Lifestyle and Lighting. Headquartered in the Netherlands, Philips posted 2011 sales of EUR 22.6 billion and employs approximately 121,000 employees with sales and services in more than 100 countries. The company is a leader in cardiac care, acute care and home healthcare, energy efficient lighting solutions and new lighting applications, as well as male shaving and grooming, home and portable entertainment and oral healthcare. News from Philips is located at


You are about to visit a Philips global content page

You are about to visit the Philips USA website.

Our site can best be viewed with the latest version of Microsoft Edge, Google Chrome or Firefox.