IBM has topped the list of companies awarded the most patents in a year for the 18th year in a row.
The data, released by IFI Claims Patent Services, has revealed that the Big Blue was awarded 5,896 patents by the US Patents and Trademark Office followed closely by Samsung with 4,551 and Microsoft with 3,094.
The US PTO issued a record 219,614 patents in 2010, an increase of 31 per cent compared to 2009.
According to BusinessWeek, amongst the patents awarded to IBM are plans for a technology to speed up earthquake detection, technology that helps to predicting traffic conditions based on information shared over short range wireless connections and a computer chip that uses light pulses instead of electrical signals.
Darlene Slaughter, general manager of IFI, said in the statement: “The tremendous increase in patent issues in 2010 suggests that so far the economy doesn’t appear to have slowed patent flow significantly in the U.S. There is still a backlog of patents pending, but the number of grants continues to grow even after a period of economic downturn.”