IBM Tops U.S. Patent List for 27th Consecutive Year
IBM inventors received a record 9,262 U.S. patents in 2019, achieving a milestone of most patents ever awarded to a U.S. company and marking the company's 27th consecutive year of U.S. patent leadership. In 2019, IBM led the industry in the number of U.S. patents granted across key technology areas such as AI, blockchain, cloud computing, quantum computing and security.
The company was awarded more than 1,800 AI patents. IBM also led in the number of blockchain patents granted, which includes several patents for improving the security of blockchain networks. Inventors were granted more than 2,500 patents in cloud technology. Their quantum computing program continued to grow significantly in 2019. Among the security patents IBM received in 2019, inventors are conducting pioneering work in the area of homomorphic encryption, a technique that allows users to operate on encrypted data, without having to decrypt it first.
"The pace of innovation continues to accelerate and reach unprecedented levels, especially in IBM's Labs. Technology advances, whether AI, cloud or quantum computing, will all contribute to solving the biggest challenges facing business and society," said John E. Kelly III, executive vice president, IBM. "Businesses around the world, and across virtually all industries, rely on IBM technology for mission critical applications and sustained innovation. We are very proud of the talented individuals across IBM who change the world through their inventions."
Since 1920, IBM has received more than 140,000 U.S. patents. Last year, more than 8,500 inventors, spanning 45 different U.S. states and 54 countries contributed to the patents awarded to the company.