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2022 Trends & Comparisons: Taiwan Invention Patent Applications and WIPO PCT Applications


Of Taiwan’s invention patent applications, semiconductors (with a share of 14.5%) claimed the top spot among 35 technology fields in 2022, while computer technology (10.4%) took the lead for all WIPO PCT applications. In Taiwan, invention patent applicants from Taiwan, Mainland China, Japan, the US and R. Korea filed mostly in semiconductors, while the top 5 countries (regions) filed mostly in computer technology, digital communication and electrical machinery in WIPO PCT applications. As for applicants, TSMC and Huawei took the lead in Taiwan and WIPO PCT applications, respectively.


Invention applications maintained modest growth in Taiwan, while WIPO PCT applications marked the slowest rate of increase in 13 years

In 2022, 50,242 invention patent filings were filed in Taiwan, an increase of 2.3% due to surging growth between 9.4%~16.1% in applications from the US, Mainland China and R. Korea. On the other hand, approximately 278,100 PCT applications were received by WIPO, marking the slowest increase of 0.3% since 2009. Of the applications, filings from Mainland China and Japan demonstrated a marginal growth of under 1.0%, while filings from the US decreased slightly at less than 1.0% (Fig. 1 and Fig. 2).

Taipei and Hsinchu city collectively account for 55.4% of all resident invention applications in Taiwan in 2022

Resident applications were filed mostly from the 6 major municipalities, as well as Hsinchu City and Hsinchu County, accounting for 92.3% of all PCT applications filed in 2022. The top 3 cities combined accounted for 55.4% in 2022, up by 4.7 percentage points compared to 2018 (50.7%). Looking only at cities, applicants residing in Hsinchu City (4,455) filed the most applications in 2022, followed by applicants from Taipei City (3,154) and New Taipei City (3,129). Furthermore, Miaoli County surged 84.9% to 538 (Fig. 3).

In 2022, semiconductors topped in Taiwan, while computer technology led in WIPO PCT applications

In 2022, the field of semiconductors (with a share of 14.5%) had the most invention patent applications in Taiwan, followed by computer technology; computer technology claimed top spot (10.4%) in published WIPO PCT applications, followed by digital communication (9.4%) (Fig. 4).

Furthermore, both the top ten technology fields for 2022 in invention applications in Taiwan and WIPO PCT applications included semiconductors, computer technology, electrical machinery, audio-visual technology, measurement, and pharmaceuticals. Of these, semiconductors topped all technology fields in Taiwan but ranked 10th with a share of 3.3% in WIPO PCT applications. This indicates that Taiwan remains outstanding in the semiconductor industry. On the other hand, digital communication and medical technology claimed two out of the top five spots in WIPO PCT applications. However, they were not among Taiwan’s top ten technology fields of invention applications (Fig. 4).

Certain top filing countries (regions) mostly filed invention applications in semiconductors in Taiwan, while primarily filing WIPO PCT applications in computer technology, digital communication, and electrical machinery

For invention applications received by TIPO, Taiwan, Japan, the US, Mainland China and R. Korea filed the most applications in semiconductors (with shares of 11.7~22.5%). On the other hand, Germany filed mostly in organic fine chemistry (10.8%), of which the top three technology fields did not include semiconductor (Table 1).

WIPO PCT applicants from Mainland China (15.7%) and the US (13.1%) filed more applications in computer technology; those from Japan and Germany filed extensively for patents related to electrical machinery (approximately 11%). R. Korea filed mostly in digital communication, computer technology and electrical machinery (10%~11%) (Table 1).

TSMC led in the number of invention patent application filings in Taiwan, while Huawei remained the top filer of WIPO PCT applications in 2022

For the fourth consecutive year, TSMC (1,950) filed the most applications in Taiwan in 2022, followed by Applied Materials (847, US), Qualcomm (763, US) and Samsung Electronics (666, KR). Regarding WIPO PCT business applicants, Huawei topped for the sixth consecutive year with 7,689 cases in 2022, followed by Samsung Electronics (4,387, KR) and Qualcomm (3,855, US); the latter two both claimed top 10 spots in Taiwan as well (Fig. 5).

Semiconductors accounted for most number of applications among the top 10 applicants in Taiwan, while digital communication had the greatest shares among the top 10 WIPO PCT applicants

Six of the top 10 applicants in 2022 filed most applications in semiconductors in applications filed in 2019-2021, including TSMC (37.2% ~ 80.6%). Of these, Nanya Technology had the most at 80.6% (Fig. 6). On the other hand, six of the top 10 WIPO PCT applicants in 2022 had the most applications published in digital communication (26.9% ~ 70.4%), including Huawei. Of these, LM Ericsson had the most at 70.4% (Fig. 7).

Samsung Electronics had significant differences over its patent portfolio between Taiwan and WIPO PCT applications. Samsung Electronics filed mostly in semiconductors in Taiwan, while putting importance on digital communication for PCT applications. On the other hand, Qualcomm filed the greatest number of applications in digital communication both in Taiwan and WIPO. But Qualcomm had minor differences over its second largest technology field: audio-visual technology in Taiwan and telecommunications in PCT applications respectively. For both Taiwan and WIPO applications, Qualcomm’s third largest tech field for patent applications was computer technology.

In comparison with Taiwan, there is more digital communication and health-related technology patenting in PCT applications

Since TIPO was established in 1999, the number of invention patent applications in Taiwan has grown by 3.6% per year on average. Semiconductors topped all technical fields, followed by computer technology, electrical machinery, optics and audio–visual technology (Fig. 8). On the other hand, since applicants worldwide began filing patent applications through the WIPO Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) system in 2013, the number of PCT applications has grown by 11.5% per year on average. Computer technology ranked first in 35 technical fields, together with medical technology, digital communication, electrical machinery and pharmaceuticals, featuring among the top five technology fields (Fig. 9). In comparison with Taiwan, there is more digital communication and health-related technology patenting in PCT applications.

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  • Publish Date : 2023-09-19
  • Update : 2023-09-19
  • Organization : International Legal Affairs Office
  • Visitors : 531

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