A World Intellectual Property Organization publication provides an overview of intellectual property (IP) activity based on the latest available year of statistics (2010). The report covers patents, utility models, trademarks and industrial designs and focuses on application data only, which is the most often used measure of IP activity.
Over 5.5 million goods and services classes were specified in the estimated 3.6 million trademark applications filed worldwide in 2010, and patent applications neared the 2 million mark.
After decreasing in 2009, trademark and patent applications saw a return to growth in 2010. Industrial design and utility model applications continued their growth. Trademarks and patents showed similar growth rates of over 7%. In contrast, industrial designs and utility models exhibited double-digit growth rates, which are largely attributed to high growth in the number of applications filed at the IP office of China.
The top 15 offices received, in 2010, over 90 percent of the estimated 1.98 million total patent applications filed worldwide. The top three offices alone – the United States of America (US), China and Japan –received about 62% of the total, representing a 2% increase over their 2009 combined share. The top five offices, three of which are located in Asia, each received between 150,000 and 500,000 applications.