The most innovative company in the world - as ranked by patents - isn't actually Apple

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Patents Awarded To U.S. Tech Companies In 2015

It is frequently said that Apple is the most innovative company on earth because its staff file more patents than any other company. Some years, that is actually true.

But not any more. This year, there are 10 companies that have filed more patents than Apple.

Sqoop indexes new patent applications and grants as they are published by the United States Patent Office. It has pulled together a list of the companies that have applied for the most patents, and received the most grants, from the USPTO so far this year.

What is surprising is that while Apple is often lauded for its innovation, it isn't applying for, or being granted, the most patents.

Apple CEO Tim Cook

IBM has been granted the most patents this year, having won 3,059 at the end of May. (Yes, that IBM, the big, old, enterprise tech company that everyone thought was being left in the dust by the newcomers of Silcon valley.)

Samsung comes second, with 3,052 patents granted. That will help the company fight the myth that it merely copies Apple.

Canon is third with 1,782.

Apple is at No.11, having been granted 780 patents this year, and Google is at No.5, followed by Sony and Microsoft.

Here are the top 40 companies by number of patents granted in 2015:

1. International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) – 3059

2. Samsung – 3052

3. Canon Kabushiki Kaisha – 1782

4. LG – 1263

5. Google – 1083

6. Sony Corporation – 1074

7. Microsoft – 1037

8. Qualcomm Incorporated – 1034

9. Kabushiki Kaisha Toshiba – 1022

10. Panasonic – 896

11. Apple – 780

12. General Electric Company – 730

13. Intel Corporation – 711

14. Ricoh Company – 695

15. Seiko Epson Corporation – 625

16. Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company – 620

17. Toyota Jidosha Kabushiki Kaisha – 613

18 Fujitsu Limited — 570

19. GM Global Technology Operations – 542

20 Hewlett-Packard Development Company – 531

21. Telefonaktiebolaget L.M. Ericsson – 509

22. Brother Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha – 486

23. BlackBerry – 461

24. Broadcom Corporation – 454

25. Semiconductor Energy Laboratory – 451

26 Robert Bosch GmbH – 436

27. Honda Motor Co. – 417

28. Sharp Kabushiki Kaisha – 410

29 Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. – 408

30. Amazon Technologies – 391

31. The Boeing Company – 391

32 Siemens Aktiengesellschaft – 388

33 –Micron Technology, Inc. 371

34. Covidien LP – 370

35. Ford Global Technologies – 359

36 Cisco Technology – 353

37 AT&T Intellectual Property – 351

38. Nec Corporation – 336

39. Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute – 327

4o. SK Hynix Inc. – 323

But Samsung has actually applied for the most patents in 2015, coming in at No.1 on Sqoop's list with 2,487. IBM is at No.2, having applied for 1,764, and Toshiba is at No.3 with 989.

On this list, Apple is all the way down at No.23, having only applied for 279 patents up until the end of May 2015.

Here are the top 40 companies by number of patents applied for in 2015:

1. Samsung – 2487

2. International Business Machines Corporation – 1764

3. Kabushiki Kaisha Toshiba – 989

4. LG – 856

5. General Electric Company – 664

6. Qualcomm Incorporated – 617

7. Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company – 561

8. Sony Corporation – 528

9. Hyundai Motor Company – 514

10. Toyota Jidosha Kabushiki Kaisha – 462

11. Google – 439

12. Ford Global Technologies – 437

13. Mitsubishi Electric Corporation – 436

14. Microsoft – 383

15. Fujitsu Limited – 373

16. SK Hynix – 333

17. Ricoh Company – 330

18. Telefonaktiebolaget L M Ericsson – 330

19. Hon Hai Precision Industry – 323

20. GM Global Technology Operations – 296

21. Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute – 293

22. FUJIFILM – 282

23. Apple – 279

24. Broadcom Corporation – 252

5. Cisco – 254

26. Xerox Corporation – 254

27. The Boeing Company – 253

28. Siemens Aktiengesellschaft – 243

29. AT&T Intellectual Property – 242

30. Robert Bosch GmbH – 236

31. Sharp Kabushiki Kaisha – 234

32. Honda Motor Co. – 214

33. Fuji Xerox Co. – 213

34. NEC Corporation – 195

35. Oracle International Corporation – 194

36. Wistron Corporation – 193

37. Baker Hughes Incorporated – 193

38. Verizon Patent and Licensing – 161

39. Nvidia Corporation – 161

40. Bank Of America Corporation – 160

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