Patents: IBM still leads while Microsoft filings show strong growth
A first evaluation of the patents granted by the US Patent and Trademarks Office (Type 1 "utility" patents) in 2009 shows that, compared to 2008, IBM stepped up its patent activities by a considerable 18% to just under 4,900 patents, clearly preserving its lead. Samsung, the eternal runner-up, faltered slightly and only gained 4% with about 3,800 patents. Microsoft pushed into third place, showing a large increase in its activities with a growth of 43% or 2,903 patents filed in total.
The next few places are occupied by Japanese corporations Canon, Matsushita, Sony and Toshiba. Intel, the market leader in the semiconductor area, sees a 12% reduction in its patent activities and comes in eighth. Once on a par with Intel in terms of patent applications, Intel's competitor AMD trailed far behind with only 204 new patents (including 16 by GlobalFoundries). Among the German firms, Siemens, ranking twenty first with 740 patents, managed to push a few places ahead of its former subsidiary Infineon, whose 639 patents show a fall back in filing rate of 24 per cent.
As usual, this first evaluation via the USPTO server is likely to differ a few positions from the figures provided by the IFI patent service, which also takes into account variables like misspelled or multiple company names.
|Rank 2009||Company||2008 (IFIs)||2008 (USPTO)||2009 (USPTO)||Difference in %|
|10||Hewlett Packard, USA||1424||1420||1271||-10|
|12||LG Electronics, KR||805||804||1063||32|
|14||Hon Hai Precision, TW||719||714||990||39|
|17||Micron Tech., USA||1250||1244||965||-22|
|20||Denso Corp., JP||708||706||745||6|