annual ranking of the world's fifty most innovative companies, based on a survey of more than 1,500 senior executives in a wide range of countries and industries. In the latest survey, tech and telecom firms led the ratings. As shown in the accompanying graphic, captured from the BCG's online interactive guide, Apple (the blue line) has led the rankings every year since 2005, and Google (in dark pink/red) has been number two or three every year since 2006.
Although innovation can be a somewhat slippery concept and this is only a survey of executive perceptions of it, what struck me about the study was the pattern shown for Samsung (the bold green line). The surveys asked about the Samsung group and were not limited to Samsung Electronics. Nevertheless, the steep drop in its ranking in 2008 coincided with the first full year of worldwide sales of the iPhone, introduced by Apple in 2007. The iPhone was a disruptive technology that no doubt helped explain Apple's number one rank over the years of this survey. Also, Samsung's rise in the rankings coincided with its introduction of Android mobile devices, beginning in 2009. Interesting, if anecdotal, patterns!