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IBM Files Most Patents in 2008

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 8 comments

According to recently released data, IBM has once again beaten the other big names in the technology industry to become the company who filed the most patents in the year 2008.

Not only did IBM file the most patents its ever filed inside a single year (and nab itself the top spot for the 16th year in a row), the company filed the most patents the U.S. Patents and Trademarks Office has ever seen in the space of 12 months. IBM announced the numbers and at the same time, plans to increase the number of technical inventions it publishes annually.

"IBM's leadership in the strategic use of intellectual property is based on balancing proprietary and open innovation," said IBM director of research John Kelly. The company plans to increase the number of inventions published each year (instead of seeking patent protection) by 50 percent, bringing the total to more than 3,000. The company said that while it will continue to file patents (we assume like there's no tomorrow, given its history with patent filing) and protect its intellectual property, its planned increase in publishing inventions will focus on areas of technology that "will increase the build out of a new, smarter infrastructure."


The top ten companies for filing patents in 2008 were as follows:

#1 IBM took the : 4186 patents.
#2 Samsung : 3515 patents.
#3 Canon : 2114 patents.
#4 Microsoft : 2030 patents.
#5 Intel : 1776 patents.
#6 Matsushita : 1745 patents.
#7 Toshiba :1609 patents.
#8 Fujitsu : 1494 patents.
#9 Sony : 1485 patents.
#10 HP : 1424 patents.

Check out the full press release here.

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  • 3 Hide
    Anonymous , January 15, 2009 7:04 PM
    Proof that the whole patent thing needs re-form.
  • 1 Hide
    thartist , January 15, 2009 8:48 PM
    so... all this companies patented like 25,000 things...

    mhm. Let me think... 25,000

    (shakes head) Koli said it
  • 1 Hide
    Shadow703793 , January 16, 2009 12:26 PM
    ^+1
  • Display all 8 comments.
  • 1 Hide
    gm0n3y , January 16, 2009 5:54 PM
    The main thing I think the patent industry needs is to drastically cut the length of time patents can be held for. Especially in the bio-med industry and pretty much the rest of the tech sector in general.
  • 0 Hide
    tipoo , January 18, 2009 2:45 PM
    +1 to everyone who posted before me...the patent system needs reform.
  • 0 Hide
    Kary , January 19, 2009 2:19 PM
    Obvious stuff, things found in nature, and equations (which includes programs) are supposed to be un-patentable.

    I think they just need to follow the rules.

    Cases in point:
    *There is a patent on waking up a printer when a print job MIGHT be sent to the printer (I found this one because I was trying to figure out how to start the printer warming up when I start the word processor.. the patent has ZERO info on HOW to wake the printer up..they just patented the IDEA of waking the printer up)

    *There is a patent on playing a game while waiting for the main game to load...because it took such a huge leap in intuition for game makers to think of people playing games to pass the time.

    *One click shopping...sure, since the 1800's or before someone could go into a store they had an account at and point at something and say "Delivery me one of those"... But now it can be done with a mouse....really...pointing...with a mouse instead of a finger. It had to be a genius to think of that AFTER the mouse was already invented and being used for a pointer.

    Maybe smarter people in the patent office is the real solution.
  • 0 Hide
    gm0n3y , January 19, 2009 5:11 PM
    Einstein used to work in a patent office...
  • 0 Hide
    Kary , January 22, 2009 7:46 PM
    and he quit :) 


    Been going downhill ever since