IBM received a record 9,100 patents in 2018, marking the 26th consecutive year the company has been granted more US patents than any other organisation.

The new patents were granted to a diverse group of more than 8,500 IBM inventors. IBMers with residence in Australia contributed 150 patents to the tally.

Overall, nearly half of the 2018 patents relate to pioneering advancements in AI, cloud computing, security, blockchain and quantum computing.

Among IBM’s patents was an AI debating tool which using machine learning to identify evidence, such as relevant text segments in unstructured text data, which supports or opposes a claim or topic under consideration. You can try it out here.

“IBM is committed to leading the way on the technologies that change the way the world works – and solving problems many people have not even thought of yet,” said Ginni Rometty, IBM chairman, president and CEO.

“Our clients and their customers are the beneficiaries of these innovations, particularly our leadership in AI, cloud, blockchain and security for business.”

Top 20

Samsung secured the second highest number of patents, followed by Canon, Intel and LG. (See the full top 50 here).

US carmaker Ford increased the number of patents it received by 14 per cent, putting it ahead of Amazon and Google. Toyota and GE were also in the top alongside tech giants like Apple and Microsoft.

The top 20 US patent recipients for 2018:

  1. IBM
  2. Samsung Electronics
  3. Canon
  4. Intel
  5. LG Electronics
  6. Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing co
  7. Microsoft
  8. Qualcomm
  9. Apple
  10. Ford
  11. Google
  12. Amazon
  13. Toyota
  14. Samsung Display Co.
  15. Sony
  16. Huawei
  17. BOE Technology Group
  18. General Electric
  19. Hyundai
  20. Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson AB

The number of patents granted by the US Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) declined 3.5 per cent to 308,853 in 2018 compared to 2017’s record year. Within the top 20 most companies filed fewer or roughly the same number of patents as in 2017.

Analysis by IFI Claims found, US companies received 46 per cent of these patents, Asian companies received 31 per cent and European companies received 15 per cent.

While Chinese companies represent only 4 per cent of 2018 US patents, they are shoring strong growth. Their 2018 total of 12,589 US patents is an increase of 12 per cent over 2017.

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