The European Patent Office (EPO) 2017 annual report, recently published, revealed several surprising patent filing trends, including the rapid growth of China .
The People’s Republic of China filed 16.6% more applications last year than in 2016, three times more than the U.S., which filed 5.8% more.
The five most active patent filing companies were Huawei (China), Siemens (Germany), LG (Korea), Samsung (Korea) and Qualcomm (U.S.).
The U.S. comprised 26% of all European applications submitted in 2017; Japan 13%. German was the lead European filer with 15% of those coming from Europe and about 7% overall.
2017 European Patent Office Annual Report
After European patent filings dropped slightly in 2016 from 2015, they were up overall by 3.9% in 2017.
Top fields were Medical Technology, up 6.2%, and Digital Communication, up 5.7%. Transport was down 4.2%.
SMEs, individual inventors, universities and research institutions, comprised 31% of applications; larger enterprises 69%. Grants were up 10.1%. Among European nations, Denmark experience the greatest application growth, 13.1%
For the full 2017 EPO Annual Report, go here.
Image source: epo.org