AUSTIN – 10 Jun, 2017 – iRunway, a technology research firm specializing in patent licensing and litigation, has released an updated patent landscape report that charts the growth of 4G-LTE technology in the U.S. region over the last two years. Technology players are focusing on R&D that can scale up current telecommunications infrastructure to provide gigabit speeds with negligible latency.
Mobile performance in the U.S. has scaled up multifold in the last decade. Over the last two years, LTE-Advanced has become a mainstream technology with advanced Carrier Aggregation capabilities, high order MIMO systems and advanced modulation schemes. The growing spectrum is encouraging the adoption of VoLTE for its efficiency, and reduced operational and maintenance costs. Joining the race are automobile manufacturers who are increasingly incorporating data connection as an integral component of a vehicle. “Operators today are actively experimenting with robust Gigabit LTE networks which provide the base for 5G networks. These LTE features offer high speeds similar to wired fibre connections. The last two years have witnessed that marked transition of 4G-LTE network technology towards the next generation, which has resulted in some interesting trends in the US 4G-LTE patent landscape,” says Animesh Kumar, Chief Solutioning Officer of iRunway.
iRunway’s research analyzed 48,709 4G-LTE technology IP assets registered with the USPTO. The study showed that 4,578 4G-LTE patent applications were filed between 2014 and 2016, of which 1,859 IP assets were owned by Asian entities. LG Electronics, Samsung and Huawei lead the list of Asian entities with large IP assets and figure among the top 10 patent portfolio owners in 4G-LTE U.S. IP landscape.
iRunway also found that 21% of the 4G-LTE IP assets in the U.S. have been declared as standard essential patents (SEPs) with the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI). Between 2015 and 2016, Samsung led the list with the highest number of 4G-LTE SEPs with 279 patents and applications, followed by Ericsson with 168 SEPs. Asian entities witnessed an increase in their 4G-LTE IP asset footprint in the U.S. patent landscape with a cumulative ownership of 46% of the SEPs. “Companies headquartered in Asia such as LG Electronics, Samsung, Sony and others have captured a fair share of the 4G-LTE market through their products and IP assets. In the last two years, Huawei has grown its 4G-LTE IP presence rapidly. Huawei has been actively researching HARQ technology in recent times, while LG Electronics has created a niche market for itself in Carrier Aggregation,” says Animesh Kumar.
LG Electronics made a late entry into the 4G-LTE IP landscape but scaled up through its M&As and in-house R&D to create a balanced portfolio in 4G-LTE. Though Samsung owns the highest number of total SEP assets (patents and applications), LG Electronics owns the highest number of granted SEPs in this space. There’s a clear race among Samsung, LG Electronics and Qualcomm in declaring SEPs that form a base for advanced 4G-LTE technology.
With companies beginning to test the 5G spectrum before its commercial deployment, patenting, licensing and monetization activities in 4G-LTE technologies are likely to increase.
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iRunway helps corporations, law firms and universities unlock and protect the value of patents by combining technology expertise with practical business insights to monetize patent portfolios and improve litigation outcomes. iRunway has offices in Austin, San Jose, Denver and Bangalore (India).
For more information about the company’s consulting model and in-depth analysis, visit www.i-Runway.com
For more information, write to Keerthana.Venkatesh@i-Runway.com
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