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US Patent Filings Up 15-Percent From 2018 With Samsung Leading – jj

US Patent Filings Up 15-Percent From 2018 With Samsung Leading


In the current smartphone era, some consumers believe that innovation is dead. Fortunately, that doesn’t seem to be the case, as the latest numbers from the patent analyst company IFI Claims says patent filings increased 15-percent in 2019. Samsung topped the patent filings holdings for the second year in a row.

US Patent Filings Increase In 2019 By 15-percent

In 2019, patent filings to the US Patent and Trademark Office (or USPTO) increased to 333,530 patents as opposed to over 200,000 patent filings in 2018.

These numbers show that companies are still filing patents to protect their personal property and R&D investments, though whether or not these patent filing ideas are groundbreaking, revolutionary, and in high demand are a matter of consumer perspective.

Unfortunately, it seems that many of these patent filing ideas haven’t made their way to the consumer public for evaluation. Additionally, some patent filings don’t pertain to the consumer market (IBM’s, for example).

Samsung leads the way with active global patents

IFI Claims conducts two studies into one, the first study referring to the number of active patents owned around the world. In this category, Samsung reigns supreme, as the South Korean company holds 76,638 active global patents.

Keep in mind that the study concerns global patents and includes not only parent companies but also their subsidiaries.

For example, Samsung purchased Harman in a deal back in 2016, but acquiring Harman also involves acquiring companies such as JBL, AKG, and Harman Kardon, among others, and patent filings for these companies would count towards Samsung’s global patents total.

IBM came in second with 37,304 active global patents. Canon made third on the list with 35,724, followed by GE with 30,010, and Microsoft Corp at #5 with 29,824 global patents. Consumer market rival LG came in at #10 with 23,043 patents. Processor makers Intel and Qualcomm placed in the top 20, with Intel at #9 with 24,628 and Qualcomm at #12 with 21,255.

IBM leads the way in 2019 US Patent Filings

The same study that examines the top 250 companies in active global patents also examines US patent filings — that is, patent filings within the US for the calendar year in question. In 2019, International Business Machine Corp., popularly known as “IBM,” led the way with 9,262 patent filings with the USPTO. This was up from 9,100 patent filings in 2018. Samsung came in second in US patent filings with 6,469, up from 5,850 filings last year. Canon placed third (3,548), Microsoft fourth (3,081), and Intel fifth (3,020). LG Electronics came in sixth with 2,805 US patent filings, one spot ahead of staunch Samsung rival Apple (2,490).

What the numbers say

Numbers speak volumes, but numbers, like words, mandate interpretation: that is, what do the numbers of the IFI Claims study really mean?

First, Samsung ranks top in global active patents, but this makes sense because of the large number of subsidiaries owned around the world by Samsung itself. The more subsidiaries a company owns, the greater its chances of increasing its patent holdings. Some companies acquire patents when they acquire companies, so that adds to the number of patent holdings as well.

Next, IBM has filed the largest number of patents in 2019, but IBM isn’t in the same market as Samsung. Companies like LG Electronics, Sony, and Apple are. And so, despite IBM’s win in the US patent filings, the interest of mobile device market readers will no doubt be on Samsung instead of IBM because Samsung ranks second in the second contest.

Samsung holds the largest number of active global patents and has filed the largest number of US patents in the mobile devices market (smartphones, tablets, smartwatches, laptops, etc.). With all Samsung’s patents, it’s not hard to see why this company remains at the top of the smartphone and wearables markets.

Now, let’s hope to see some of these US patents brought to market sooner rather than later.

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