A new report from analyst Chetan Sharma predicts that one quarter of all patents granted this year will be related to mobile technology. Many observers say the increasing patent applications is a sign that the global mobile patent war is just beginning.
All Things D's Ina Fried reported, "If you think the mobile patent wars are winding down, think again. A new report shows that a quarter of U.S. patents issued this year are likely to be related to mobile technology. That’s up from just 5 percent of all patents in 2001, according to analyst Chetan Sharma. In Europe, mobile is somewhat less of a focus, accounting roughly 10 percent of all patents."
TechCrunch's Ingrid Lunden noted, "Samsung, also currently the world’s biggest mobile company, received the most mobile patents in 2012, and it now holds the most mobile patents of any company worldwide, according to the latest patent report out from mobile analyst Chetan Sharma, which lays out a thicket of companies scrambling to put a legal seal on their intellectual property in the fast-moving world of wireless communications. For his study, Sharma looked at more than 7 million mobile patents awarded in the U.S. and Europe, the two biggest markets for patents globally at the moment. He found that the U.S. has stolen a march over its old world counterpart since 1996. The U.S. accounts for nearly three-quarters (72%) of all mobile patents across the two regions."
BGR's Brad Reed wrote, "Sharma says that the surge in mobile patents is unsurprising since smartphones and tablets have quickly become 'the growth engine of the knowledge economy,' which gives companies a lot more incentive to patent everything they can to both maximize their returns on R&D and to prevent potential suits from patent trolls."
VentureBeat's Ricardo Bilton commented, "But while the increase in mobile patents is a good sign that the mobile industry won’t stop growing anytime soon, the news here isn’t all good. A big question on many minds is how many of the patents filed this year will be poorly conceived, overly broad, or plain dumb. For lots of lawyers, activists, and even game execs, the current patent system is broken, which means that it might actually be bad news if these numbers continue to increase at this rate. But this isn’t just about mobile. The increase in mobile patents comes as the overall number of patent applications has increased by 61 percent over the past decade, according to the US Patent Office. Clearly our patent system is still alive and well, and for a lot of people, that’s exactly the problem."