Signify Premium Insight: Top Five Predictions in 2021 for the Imaging IT and AI Markets

Published: January 28, 2021

The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has created global turmoil and sown uncertainty at companies across many industrial sectors, while the endlessly acknowledged unprecedented nature of the pandemic is making it difficult for firms to plan ahead. Despite this, thanks to our market expertise, we are able to confidently make some predictions about the trends that will be seen in the Imaging IT and Imaging AI markets in 2021.

There will be limited releases of advanced clinical and diagnostic tools in 2021

The year ahead is one in which hospitals will be inundated with both COVID-19 patients, and patients awaiting postponed treatments. Managing this influx of patients will be the providers’ focus. As such, they will be risk averse, avoiding the distraction of untested innovations which promise future benefit in favour of tried-and-true solutions offering workflow and operational improvements immediately.

This was evident at the virtual RSNA show in 2020. In a typical year, start-ups are in attendance looking for providers to partner with, enabling them to prove their innovations in real hospital settings. In 2020, however, companies with new technologies struggled to forge the partnerships necessary for them to run pilots and validate their products in the real world.

The companies most likely to be affected by the providers’ more focused mentality will be those that are smaller. Larger vendors and more established companies may already have links to providers and the ability to hold out until providers are able to once again enter into partnerships, but smaller vendors and start-ups lacking this resource could struggle. Even the vendors better placed to deal with this shift will likely be affected, after all, if they are unable to commercialise their products, and are bringing in less revenue, then a greater percentage of their funding will have to be spent on operational costs, leaving less money for R&D.

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