Since 1920, IBM says it has received more than 150,000 US patents and played a crucial role in innovations ranging from magnetic storage to laser eye surgery.

IBM tops US 2020 patent list with 9130 patents India second-highest contributor
Atom Patent Wednesday, January 13, 2021 - 12:13

IBM scientists and researchers received 9,130 US patents in 2020, the most of any company, marking 28 consecutive years of IBM patent leadership. IBM led the industry in the number of artificial intelligence (AI), cloud, quantum computing and security-related patents granted. With 930 patents granted to employee inventors from India, IBM India is the second highest contributor to the global tally after US.

“The world needs scientific thinking and action more than ever. IBM’s sustained commitment to investing in research and development, both in good and in challenging times, has paved the way for new products and new frontiers of information technology that have greatly benefited our clients and society,” said Darío Gil, Senior Vice President and Director of IBM Research. “The culture of innovation at IBM is stronger than ever, thanks to our inventors worldwide who devote themselves to advancing the boundaries of knowledge in their respective fields every single day.” 

IBM led the industry in the number of US patents across key technology fields: 

Making AI More Intuitive 

IBM received more than 2,300 AI patents as inventors developed new AI technologies to help businesses scale their use of AI. Patents in this area ranged from technology to make virtual agents more responsive to emotions when speaking to customers, to AI that can help people make difficult decisions -- summarizing key decision points from a variety of information sources, both written and verbal, and presenting them in easy-to-understand visualizations.

Streamlining Hybrid Cloud Deployments at the Edge

IBM received more than 3,000 patents related to cloud and hybrid cloud technologies. IBM inventors developed a technology to intelligently distribute the data processing components between the cloud, the edge and computing devices in-between. Edge and hybrid cloud offerings are crucial parts of IBM’s product roadmap.

Laying the Foundation for Powerful Quantum Applications

Quantum computing is a major focus for IBM and this is reflected in IBM’s leadership in quantum computing patents. IBM was also granted a patent that sets the foundation for investigating more accurate and efficient risk analysis calculations on a quantum computer. These ideas are already being extended by research done in partnership with leading financial institutions.

Maximising Security for the World’s Most Sensitive Data

As enterprises work to protect their data, particularly in highly-regulated industries, IBM inventors received more than 1,400 security-related patents. IBM inventors patented a technique that allows encrypted data to be organised so that FHE vector comparison operations can be performed efficiently and maximises the security of the data.

Patents were awarded to more than 9,000 inventors located in 46 US states and 54 countries. Since 1920, IBM says it has received more than 150,000 US patents and played a crucial role in innovations ranging from magnetic storage to laser eye surgery.

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