According to patent analysis firm IFI Claims Patents Services, Microsoft’s rank in the list of top U.S. patent recipients dropped to No.10 from No.5 last year. Microsoft only had 1956 patents, just 18 patents more than Apple which is at 11th position. IFI claims that significant drop in Microsoft’s patent might be due to their new strategy of assigning some patents to newly formed holding companies.
Several Top 50 companies dropped considerably lower in the rankings, but not solely because they generated fewer patents. One of the reasons for the seismic shifts this year, according to Larry Cady, IFI CLAIMS Patent Services Senior Analyst, is due to where patents are being parked.
“Rather than keeping all corporate patents under a single registration, some companies are choosing to spread their portfolios across multiple entities,” said Cady. “This is why we are seeing such dramatic movement this year with Microsoft and Panasonic, which all started assigning some patents to newly formed holding companies.”
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