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The 2015 annual report of the European Patent Office (EPO) showed that the EPO totally received 279,000 patent applications in 2015, a slight increase over 274,000 in 2014. In addition to China, the number of patent applications from USA companies also has a remarkable increase. The volume of the patent applications from 38 EPO member states remained largely stable in comparison with 2014.

Overall, medical technologies were once again the field with the largest number of patent applications filed at the EPO in 2015, growing by a further 11% over 2014. Fields such as “engines, pumps, turbines”, “pharmaceuticals”, “measurement” and “computers”, etc. also have obvious growth. Among the global enterprises, Philips moved into the top spot on the list of companies with the most patent applications at the EPO in 2015. Samsung ranked second, followed by LG, Huawei, Siemens.

With 1,953 patent applications, Huawei was the most active Chinese patent applicant, followed by ZTE(870 applications). Xiaomi, Tencent, BOE, CATT and Alibaba were also on the list. The patent applications from China focus on three technical fields, digital communication, computer technology and telecommunication. 

<EPO Top 25 applicants 2015> 

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Analysis based on European patent applications filed with the EPO in 2015 (Direct European applications and International applications entering the European phase in 2015). Statistics are based on the first-named applicant.