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Apple was one of the Top 10 Global Companies receiving Granted Patents in 2020 with TSMC making Impressive Gains



An ifi CLAIMS Patent Services report has presented the top 10 US patent assignees for 2020 with Apple coming in at #8 with 2,791 granted patents for 2020 up 12% over 2019. IBM remained #1 with 9,130 granted patents down 1% over 2019.


The one granted patent holder in the 10 top that made significant gains in 2020 over 2019 was Apple's chip partner TSMC who ranked #6 by growing 22% for the year.


Last month Business Korea reported that "TSMC increased the number of its U.S. patents by 22 percent last year. According to industry sources, this is to protect itself from patent trolls and keep Samsung Electronics in check with the Taiwanese company about to produce chips in the United States.


TSMC’s registered patents can be used against Samsung Electronics, which is expected to invest US$17 billion in the United States this year alone. TSMC, whose 5-nanometer fab is scheduled to be put into operation in Arizona in 2024, needs to blunt Samsung Electronics’ offensive. The Taiwanese company may share its patents with patent trolls so that patent infringement lawsuits can be filed against Samsung Electronics."


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2 Top 10 Companies being granted patents in 2020


Top Countries


The top countries by number of US granted patents in 2020 were: United States (US 164,379 granted patents this year), followed by Japan (52,421) and South Korea (KR 22,400). China (CN) is the fourth country in terms of number of granted patents (18,792) in the US. Germany (DE) is the top European country in terms of protected technology in the US (16,222).


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3 patents 2020 by country


Other countries and granted patent totals include: Taiwan (TW) with 11,286; France (FR) with 6,312; Great Britian (GB) 5,333; Switzerland (CH) with 4,514; and finally The Netherlands (NL) with 4,317. 


Fastest Growing Technologies


According to ifi CLAIMS, the fastest growing technology based on patent applications – a strong indicator of what’s coming down the pike – is Computer Systems Based on Biological Models, which saw a 67 percent increase from 2016-20. This hot area of computing uses brain biology as an inspiration and includes Big Tech stalwarts such as Google, Microsoft and Intel. Another area, Electrical Smoking Devices, saw a 55 percent increase over the same period. Other fast-movers include Machine Learning, Quantum Computing, Auto-pilots/Navigation for Vehicles, and 3D Printing. To view the full report, visit the 2020 Top 10 Fastest-Growing Technologies published today.


Mike Baycroft, CEO of IFI CLAIMS Patent Services:  "Overall, U.S. patent activity was down slightly last year, despite the pandemic. This is a minor downward tick in what’s been a largely upward trajectory we’ve seen over the past decade, and it’s still 13 percent higher than what we saw in 2018. Another positive indicator is that published pre-grant applications saw a nominal increase in 2020. But we’ll have to wait at least another year before we can determine if the pandemic had any impact."


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