We've written an awful lot regarding patents in the past 12 months. As it turns out, during that time Apple has been awarded a quite a few new ones for us to spend the next several decades talking about. In fact, The New York Times reports that 1 Infinite Loop was awarded 1,136 new patents in 2012 alone.
That number was up a whopping 68 percent over 2011, earning Apple the 22nd spot on a list of 50 companies led by IBM, which was awarded 6,478 patents in 2012. Apple rival Samsung came in second with 5,081 patents awarded; Google ranked just one spot ahead of Apple with 1,152 patents. Microsoft placed sixth, having been granted 2,613 new patents.
Apple placed No. 39 on the same ranking for 2011, when it was awarded 676 patents. It should be interesting to see how many of 2012's patents find applications in actual products. Not as interesting: How many are brought to bear in lawsuits against competitors or how many are found to be invalid by a court.
[Via Apple Insider]