Over the past five to ten years it has become crystal clear that patents are where not only a lot of money is hold up, but where the future of a firm may lie. Some of the biggest firms all over the world know this only too well, and in the case of Apple and Samsung, patents that pre-date the smartphone have been used to argue over who copied who in terms of design. Samsung suffered not only financial losses as a result of their battles with Samsung, but no doubt a bruised ego, too. It seems as though Samsung has taken this lesson to heart however, as the South Korean firm is now filing more patents than they ever have done, and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) puts them at the top spot for 2015, filing more patents than anyone else.
It's important to remember that the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) only saw Samsung join in 2014, but even so in the report from 2015 Samsung is credited as filing 1,132 different design patents. This figure eclipses the second place holder – who might come as a surprise as being the Swatch group – with just 532 filings. Rounding out the top three was Fonkel with 438 different filings. As mentioned, Samsung only joined the WIPO in 2014, along with the rest of South Korea which ranked a respectable fourth place in terms of overall rankings by country. The top three places went to Germany, Switzerland and France which filed 3,453, 3,316 and 1,317 filings each, respectively.
This is perhaps another great example of Samsung look ahead to the future, but it also just goes to show how many patents a company of Samsung's size can file in just a single year. After all, Samsung is not just all about their smartphone business, and find success in household appliances as well as many other areas of technology. Filing the right patents is not only essentially to protecting your own intellectual property, but can – as the likes of Microsoft and Apple have proven – lead to some extra income further down the line through licensing or high-profile court cases in the extreme.