Big Differences in Patent Statistics of China and United States Patent Offices

Big Differences in Patent Statistics of China and United States Patent Offices

The number of patent applications in SIPO in China has overtaken USPTO in the United States. Most of these patents have been applied by the researchers and companies inside China. Nanoelectronics and nanomaterial have the most shares of foreign patents in nanotechnology field in SIPO, which indicates the strength of China’s market in the two fields.

Patenting can be considered an indicator to assess technology in a country as patents statistics somehow reflects technological innovations. The statistics can even be used to analyze the market rivals in a specific field.

SIPO and USPTO are the patenting offices in China and United States, respectively, and they receive plenty of patents every year. In 2015, China Patent Office recorded the highest patent applications in the world and took the place of USPTO. SIPO received 1.102 million patent applications in 2015, which showed an 18.7% increase compared to the previous year. The number was 589,410 applications in United States.

Analyzing the patents of the two offices shows that USPTO has received the most applications from outside United States. There is an interesting balance between applications from inside and outside United States in a way that the fluctuations in the applications are usually similar too. However, it is totally different in SIPO. There has been a balance similar to that of USPTO between domestic and international applications in SIPO until 2014, but from 2014 onwards, domestic patent applications have increased fast and become twelvefold in 2015, while the number of overseas applications only double at the same time.

Patent offices in China, United States, Japan, South Korea, European Union, Germany, India, Russia, Canada, and Brazil have ranked 1st to 10th in 2015. Interestingly, there has been a balance between domestic and overseas applications only in United States and European Union, and in most of the countries, one of them has been more than the other. In China, Japan, South Korea, Germany, and Russia, domestic applications have been more and in India, Canada, and Brazil, overseas applications have been more.

The growth of the overseas nanotechnology patents started in SIPO in 2000 and reached its peak during the past recent years. United States, Japan, and South Korea are among the countries that have registered most international nanotechnology patents in SIPO.

Registration of foreign patents in a country is an indication of that country’s market. Analyzing foreign patent of SIPO shows that until 2009, nanoelectronics had a 42% share and nanomaterial had a 41% share of the foreign patents in SIPO. In fact, nanomaterial and nanoelectronics are popular markets in China, and foreign companies try to register their patents in China to defend their right to their intellectual property. Nano-biology and medicine with 9%, measurement and characterization with 5% rank next. Germany and United States in nanomaterial, and Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan in nanoelectronics have patented their products in SIPO.



1- Layout of Foreign Countries (Regions) in China's Nano-market: A Perspective from Patent Analysis (Here)
2- China vs. U.S. Patent Trends. How Do the Giants Stack Up? (Here)