February 18, 2020
According to data recently released by IFI Claims, a whopping 333,530 utility patents were granted by the US Patent and Trademark Office in 2019. This number represents an impressive 15% jump from the 288,832 patents issued in 2018 and is the greatest number of patents ever issued in a single year.
Technology dominated the U.S. patent filings in 2019. Tech giants IBM and Samsung remained patent leaders. IBM was granted an impressive 9,262 patents, and Samsung trailed behind at 6,469. Canon (3,548 patents), Microsoft (3,081 patents) and Intel (3,020 patents) rounded out the top five. Notably, electrical digital data processing, transmission of digital information, and semiconductor devices (including electric SSDs) were the largest patent categories in 2019.
Innovation in the medical and biotechnology sectors also continued to grow in 2019. The creation of new hybrid plants, CRISPR genome editing, and medicinal preparations were among the top technology trends experiencing the fastest patent classification growth.
While patents do not necessarily reflect what products will ultimately end up in the market, patent data helps shed light on trends in technology and innovation. What remains to be seen is if this rapid growth will continue in 2020.
Authors: Jaclyn Tilak and Megan Brooks