Apple was granted 2,813 patents in 2015

Sqoop, the online service that tracks patent applications and lawsuits, has revealed the most innovative companies of 2015, based on the number of successful patent applications it made. Apple placed 12th overall on the list with 2,813 granted patents.

Ahead of Apple on the list are, from 11 to one: Intel; Panasonic, Microsoft, Sony; Toshiba; Qualcomm ; Google; LG; Canon; IBM; and Samsung  moved from number two into the top position for grants, displacing IBM.

Out of the top 20 applications and grants, it’s hard to categorize too finely given the product diversity of these companies, but generally, according to Sqoop:

  • The vast majority are technology companies, broadly speaking, i.e., computers, chips, displays or software and services.

  • Optical products, including cameras, copiers, etc. was the second largest category including Canon, Sony, Ricoh and Epson, though clearly there’s overlap with tech.

  • Only two grants are from the automotive sector, Toyota and GM, but four auto companies are in the top 20 for applications: Toyota, Ford, Hyundai and GM.

  • GE is in numerous segments, including appliances, power and energy, healthcare and transportation.

  • Seven of the top 20 applications, and eight of the top 20 grants, are American companies, with the balance from Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and Sweden.