Whatever your opinion might be about the mess of worldwide patent systems that companies must navigate these days, it remains clear that there is a need to protect intellectual property. And in the wearable technology space, companies have been availing themselves of this protection — such as it may be — in greater numbers than ever.

According to a report on Sensors Online, the market tracking firm Lux Research has released a study about wearable devices and flexible electronics. The report states that from 2010 through 2015, more than 41,000 patents have been published for wearable devices. The filing rate has grown by a compound annual growth rate of 40% over this period. During the same period, nearly 141,000 patents were filed for printed, flexible, and organic electronics (PFOE), but of these, just 651 were for wearables. Lux Reasearch analysts point out that there are development opportunities applying some of these technologies to wearable products.

This is just one more indication of how rapidly the wearable Health Tech market is expanding, and yet how much more opportunity for growth remains. Hang onto your hats; we’re just getting started.