Huawei, China Top Euro Patents

DPMA, the official German patent office, finds “China more and more innovative in digital technologies. In the promising field of digital communication technology’, in which, among other things, inventions in connection with the new 5G mobile communications standard are recorded, the country with 4,308 applications (+ 6.8%) even overtook the USA, which had 4,115 applications.”

Huawei is spending $22 billion on R & D. China Mobile made over 3,000 proposals to 3GPP for the 5G standard. China Telecom participated in over 1,000. Only Alphabet spent more than Huawei.

Patent counts only indirectly measure progress but the trend is clear. China’s R&D investment is growing far faster than the US, although a large gap remains.

Huawei has just filed a patent on quantum computing and chips.

Special thanks to Florian Mueller, whose free patent newsletter is very well informed.

DPMA Annual Report 2021: China more and more innovative in digital technologies

Analysis of digitization shows significant growth in Chinese patent applications – DPMA President: China’s plan for technology leadership is progressing – Annual report offers technology and brand trends – New digital version enables additional functions and special user-friendliness on mobile devices

Press release of June 2, 2022

Munich. China has massively expanded its position as one of the leading economies for digital technologies on the German market. In all important technology fields related to digitization, the number of published Chinese patent applications effective for Germany in 2021 increased significantly compared to the previous year. In the promising field of “digital communication technology”, in which, among other things, inventions in connection with the new 5G mobile communications standard are recorded, the country with 4,308 applications (+ 6.8%) even overtook the USA, which had 4,115 applications (- 2, 4%).

On their home market, German applicants are among the top 5 countries in four of the five technology fields considered, but only in two among the top 3. This was the result of an analysis carried out by the German Patent and Trademark Office (DPMA) for its 2021 annual report. The report is available from today on the DPMA website at For the evaluation, we considered published patent applications with effect for Germany in the technical areas mentioned at the DPMA and the European Patent Office without double counting. Patent applications are published after 18 months. Inventions newly registered in 2021 are therefore not yet included.

“As far as Germany is concerned, there is light and shadow. In some areas the number of innovations is increasing, in others the country is falling behind or does not appear among the leading nations at all,” said DPMA President Cornelia Rudloff-Schäffer. “Chinese innovation dynamics, on the other hand, have been immense in recent years. China’s plan to achieve technological leadership in key future technologies is clearly progressing. It remains to be seen how the Chinese corona strategy will affect the economy and innovation.”

Exciting stories from Otto Lilienthal to Mickey Mouse

Annual Report 2021

In addition to current technology trends, the DPMA Annual Report 2021 again contains a large number of statistics – such as the ranking of the federal states for the various property rights and the ranking of the companies with the most applications. The report also offers exciting stories – this time about the aviation pioneer Otto Lilienthal on the 125th anniversary of his death and about brands related to Mickey Mouse, which also became known in Germany with the first German printed edition 70 years ago.

New digital version: reader-friendly, multimedia, ideal for mobile devices

This year, for the first time, we are offering the DPMA annual report when it is published in a particularly user-friendly version in HTML format. The new digital information offer combines high-quality content with modern, multimedia elements. Readers are navigated through the pages with a digital table of contents. Photo galleries offer additional insights and graphics are even clearer thanks to new functions. The advantages of the new digital version are particularly evident when used on smartphones and tablets, as we have placed great importance on the responsive design. If you would like to download the 2021 annual report in the conventional way, you will still find a PDF version on our website. The report will be available in paper form from the DPMA press office from mid-June.

Take a look, it’s worth it!

The German Patent and Trademark Office

Ingenuity and creativity need effective protection. The DPMA is the German competence center for all intellectual property rights – for patents, utility models, trademarks and designs. As the largest national patent office in Europe and the fifth-largest national patent office in the world, it stands for the future of the inventor country Germany in a globalized economy. Its almost 2,800 employees at three locations – Munich, Jena and Berlin – are service providers for inventors and companies. They implement the federal government’s innovation strategies and further develop the national, European and international protection systems.

Image: DPMA

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