Samsung Electronics has received the maximum number of 5G patents during 2019 which goes beyond smartphones and chipsets and covers network infrastructure equipment for connectivity. The company holds 1,728 granted patents and leads the pack.
Making these observations through a media post on its website (opens in new tab), the Korean tech giant said the it topped the list of companies with granted 5G patents as per a study commissioned by the Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and Energy in Germany.
The study, was conducted by research firm IPLytics and the Technical University of Berlin in January, revealed that Samsung Electronics had the most 5G patents granted by at least one of the patent offices in Europe, the US or the Patent Cooperation Treaty.
The company has 1,728 granted patents following by Nocia with 1,584, LG with 1,415 and Huawei with 1,274 patents in the overall 5G spectrum. All these patents are enforceable, which means that the companies have exclusive rights on these patents, which means they can claim legitimate license fees for their use.
“These figures on 5G patents are the result of our continued and unrelenting commitment to 5G innovation. Based on our leadership in 5G patents, we will continue to advance 5G and spearhead the development of next generation telecommunication technologies that will transform our daily lives in future,” says Sunghyun Choi, Senior Vice President and head of Advanced Communications Research Center at Samsung Research.
Preparing to own the future
In its executive summary, the IPLytics research paper says the fourth industrial revolution will rely on a stable, real-time communication allowing the constant exchange of massive amounts for data. The next telecommunication generation 5G standard is an important step to meet these new requirements of connectivity for future applications.
And this is where patents become mission critical. There thousands standard essential patents in the field of telecommunications and when the 5G network starts expanding, companies would seek to license any of these essential patents under the fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory terms - in other words, by paying licensing fees.
“The past few years have shown that 3G and 4G patent holders have controlled how mobile technologies are used in the smartphone industry and owners of 5G essential patents will likely become technology and market leaders, thus enabling 5G connectivity in various markets.”
The research suggests that 5G technology is amongst the most patented in history with a total of 95,526 declarations spread across 21,571 unique patent families that go way beyond just 5G-enabled smartphones and chips. Patent offices have granted less than half of these patent families that were filed between 2017 and 2019.
In recent times, Samsung has worked with cellular network operators in Japan, South Korea, the United States and New Zealand among others to roll out 5G networks. The company also recently partnered with Xilinx to power up its 5G network equipment.