IFI Claims Patent Services has just published the list of Top 50 US Patent assignees which throws up some interesting stats and facts. While IBM has retained its top position for nineteenth year in a row, Microsoft has dropped from third position to sixth position in the list. These two are the only US companies amongst the top 10 Patent assignees.
Samsung vs Apple
The Korean consumer giant, Samsung Electronics stands second in the list of top US patent assignees with 4,894 patents received in 2011. And guess how many patents their staunch rivals who had dragged them to courts the most in 2011 have managed? 676.
Yes, Apple has managed to get assigned a mere 676 patents and stands No.39 in the top 50 list. Of course what matters more is the quality and impact of the patents assigned, but many would be surprised to see the gap in terms of sheer numbers.
As a matter of fact, Samsung had stood No.2 in 2010 as well, while Apple was No.46. So, the 2011 list should not come as a big surprise for those who keep a keen interest on patent claims and assignments. but for the rest like me, this was indeed an eye-opener.
Other interesting facts
- USPTO issued 224,505 utility patents in 2011.
- Asian firms account for 25 of the top 50 patent grant recipients, and US firms captured 17 slots.
- 8 out of the top 10 slots are occupied by Asian firms.
- HP (1,308) and Intel (1,244) fell out of the top 10 and landed 14th and 16th, respectively.
Below is the complete list of Top 50 US Patent Assignees in 2011.
Source: IFI Claims