According to a data published in Patent Intelligence and Technology report made by IFI Claims Patent Services, IBM has yet again acquired maximum number of patents as the applicant. The number of patents acquired by IBM has gone to 6478 in 2012 from 6180 in 2012 which is 5% more.

It is not the first time that IBM has received maximum number of patents in a year; in fact IBM has been on the top of this list for last 20 years. The report published by IFI Claims gives us the data about the top 50 companies who have filed maximum number of patents at USPTO. The surprise entry to this list is Google who have entered the list with 1,151 patents and that is 170% increase from the patents that Google had in 2011. Google is placed just above Apple corp. who has 1,136 patents on their name and has also seen a rise of 68% as compared to the number of patents in 2011.

Now let us talk about the top 5 companies in the list which are:

As we can see from the table that IBM was followed by electronic giant Samsung whose patent portfolio for financial year (FY) 2012 increased by 5081 patents which was 4% more than FY 2011 and at third place was is an imaging technologies company which is Canon and they too increased the number of patents granted to them by 12%.

Only one other IT company except IBM was able to make a mark on this list by entering into top 10 list of IFI Claims report and that company is Microsoft who recorded 2,613 patents in 2012.

IBM received 6,478 patents for its research in 2012; the most any company has received in a single year. Companies use the patent system to protect the intellectual property that is being generated by the research going on in the research and development cell. IBM has mainly focused on patenting their innovations so that they remain in lead from their competitors which are emerging in the European as well as in Asia-pacific. Just to remain in lead in the race IBM has tend to patent more heavily than any other US company. According to report of IFI Claims, in 2012, 17 US based companies made to the list of top 50 whereas there were 26 companies from Asia.

If we see the data between 2002 and 2012 than we can see that IBM was issued more than 47000 US patents and this can be seen from the image displayed below and the trend of the company is also depicted in the image.

In 2012, IBM has patented a wide variety of technologies which includes a Watson-based method for providing answers to questions (U.S. Patent #8,275,803), a technique for reducing energy consumption in cloud computing environments (U.S. Patent #8,341,441), and a set of algorithms and circuits that mimic how the brain’s synapses work to learn new information (U.S. Patent #8,250,010).

There are a lot of inventors that are working for IBM and they are listed on their US patent grants. The list below depicts the top 10 inventors for IBM for FY2012.

Another important aspect of filing patents is the help of the legal representative who have helped the company in filing patent applications at USPTO. IBM has a lot of legal representatives that are working for them and for the convenience of readers I have provided the list of top 10 representatives here:

If we go in details of the data collected by the IFI Claims we find out that have not only focused on patents but on utility patents mainly. In 2012, USPTO granted 253,155 utility patents which saw an increase of 13% from the FY 2011. This was the maximum number of patents that have been issued by the USPTO.