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China Sees Uptick in 2021 U.S. Patent Grants, Analysis Shows


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Total U.S. patent grants declined about 7 percent from 2020, the most precipitous drop in the past decade, according to an analysis of patent applications by IFI Claims Patent Services. Grants went from 352,000 in 2020 to 327,329 in 2021; published patent applications also saw a slight downtick, from 413,173 to 410,093. An overview is on the IFI website.

The 2021 U.S. Top 50 and related rankings from IFI provide insight into the most innovative companies and R&D organizations. The top patent assignees for the year were, in order, IBM (8,682 grants), Samsung Electronics (6,366), Canon (3,021), TSMC (2,798), Huawei Technologies (2,770), Intel (2,615), Apple (2,541), LG Electronics (2,487), Microsoft (2,418), and Qualcomm (2,149).

In a year that saw U.S. patent grants decrease anywhere from 8 to 12 percent among worldwide
corporations, China-based companies stood out with an increase of 10 percent, going from 18,792 awards in 2020 to 20,679 in 2021. A total of four Chinese companies are now in the U.S. Top 50.

U.S.-based companies stood head-and-shoulders above their international peers in innovating, accounting for 150,801 new grants, or more than half of all patent grants by USPTO in 2021. Japanese companies were second with 47,105, followed by South Korean (21,264), Chinese (20,679), and German (14,663).

From IFI Claims Patent Services
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