“China showed the most growth [by country], moving up to a 5% share of U.S. patents at #4, with a nearly 35% increase over 2018. According to IFI’s analysis, this continues ‘a well-established trend.’”
U.S. patent grants grew by 15% from 2018 to 2019, with IBM heading the pack for the 27th consecutive year, according to IFI CLAIMS Patent Services’ 2019 report. There were 333,530 U.S. patents granted last year, compared with 288,832 in 2018, which represented a 3.5% decline from 20I7. IFI said the growth could possibly be attributed to examiner clarity on patent eligibility following the USPTO’s guidance on Alice, as illustrated in IPWatchdog’s article by Kate Gaudry and Samuel Hayim last year.
IBM received 9,262 patents in 2019; in 2018 it received 9,100. According to IFI’s press release, nearly half of the patents the company received in 2019 related to “hot button technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), cloud computing, security, blockchain and quantum computing.”
Of the Top 50 US Patent Assignees, the largest percentage change in patent grants went to Korean company, Kia Motors Corp., with a 164% jump between 2018 and 2019. The company moved up 58 places to #41.
Other companies that showed significant growth include:
- Hewlett Packard Enterprise – jumping 28 places to #48
- Facebook – up 22 places to #36
- Micron Technology – up 9 places to #25
- Huawei – up 6 places to #10
- BOE Technology – up 4 places to #13
- Microsoft – up 3 places to #4
The Top 10 Fastest Growing Technologies by patent growth include “CRISPR technology, creating new hybrid plants, dashboards (mostly related to automobiles), 3-D printing, and medicinal preparations (especially cancer therapies).”
With respect to growth by country in which U.S. patent recipients are based, the United States jumped by 3 percentage points from holding a 46% share of U.S patents in 2018 to a 49% share of U.S. patents granted in 2019. Sixteen percent of 2019 U.S. patents went to Japan, followed by South Korea with nearly 7 percent. China showed the most growth, moving up to a 5% share of U.S. patents at #4, with a nearly 35% increase over 2018. According to IFI’s analysis, this continues “a well-established trend.”
Samsung tops the list of Top 250 Largest Global Patent Holders, with 76,638 active patent families. The number two company, IBM, has 37,304.
“We expected U.S. grants to increase this year after a rise in applications last year but a surge of this magnitude is truly unprecedented,” said Mike Baycroft, CEO, IFI CLAIMS Patent Services, in a press release.
Baycroft added that the U.S.Top 50 and Top 1000 lists provide insight into which companies are developing innovation, while the IFI 250 looks at current patent ownership and provides perspective on the relative sizes of corporate patent portfolios.
An interactive tool using data from the top 1000 companies that received U.S. patents in 2019 allows users to create their own analyses using a variety of filters with a free registration.
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