IBM Filed Most US Patents For 22nd Straight Year

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IBM did it again…for the 22nd year in a row. Big Blue announced on Monday, January 12th that it had received the most patents from the U.S. Patent Office in 2014 with a total of 7,534 patents issued. That number is a solid 34% higher than second-place Samsung, which filed for 4,952 U.S. patents last year. This data is provided by IFI Claims Patent Services.

Third through 10th place on top patent recipients for 2014 list were Canon at 4,055; Sony with 3,224; Microsoft with 2,829; Toshiba filing fort 2,608; Qualcomm at 2,590; Google with 2,566; LG with 2,122; and Panasonic at the bottom with 2,095.

IBM’s multiyear IP domination

2014 was the 22nd consecutive year that IBM took first place in patents issued by the U.S. PTO. This remarkable achievement includes a variety of patents in analytics, security, cloud computing, mobile and social media.

When you do the math, it turns out that Big Blue averaged over 20 patents a day in 2014, with more than 8,500 scientists being named as inventors on one patent. This year’s accomplishment is particularly noteworthy as no company had ever received more than 7,000 patents in one year.

IBM has made a gargantuan investment in R&D. Just over the last five years, the tech titan has spent an average of $6.18 billion a year on R&D. Of note, IBM’s R&D expenditures place them below the ten biggest spenders, meaning the firm is getting a lot more patents per dollars spent than Volkswagen, Samsung, Intel, Microsoft and others on that top 10 list.

In its statement released Monday, IBM noted its most important innovations of 2014 included patents for assessing social risk due to exposure from linked contacts; natural-language processing; identifying if an app is malicious; enabling service virtualization in a cloud and coordinating data sharing among apps in mobile devices among others

Big Blue also announced several important innovations last year. For example, the firm introduced a cognitive computer that thinks like the human brain, a Big Data initiative to diagnose skin cancer more accurately than was previously possible, and establishing a Guinness world record for the smallest magazine cover ever published.

In earlier announcements about its patent portfolio, IBM has noted that it earns over $1 billion a year in licensing fees from its intellectual property, and its wide patent portfolio offers some protection from  competitor lawsuits.

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