Patenting in the field of Quantum Information Technology (QIT) has accelerated over the last three years. Computer related patent family publications are projected to increase by 430% between 2014 and 2017. Application related patent family publications are projected to increase by 350% between 2014 and 2017.
IBM is building an enormous portfolio in QIT, primarily in Qubit Technologies, and Hardware, and have had the most patent families published in the last two years. Their portfolios is one of the most influential.
Northrup Grumman, HP, Raytheon, Qinetiq, and Magiq Technologies are North American companies who have substantial patent portfolios in the QIT space, and might make excellent partners, or patent acquisition targets as consolidation begins when the market grows.
Chinese organizations are dominating the patenting of quantum applications, and within QIT they have nearly two times as many patent families projected for 2017 as the United States, the next closest country – They are particularly interested in cryptology.
University backed start-ups are a significant source of potentially valuable patents, and portfolios. MIT, Yale, Harvard, and Stanford portfolios, or start-ups associated with them will be likely acquisition targets as the market grows, and larger players are looking to solidify their positions.
Other smaller companies to consider for partnerships, or patent acquisition opportunities include: Quantum Circuits (Yale driven start-up), Qucor, Element 6, Rigetti Computing, and 1QB Information Technologies.
Chinese firms, Qasky, QuantumCTek, and Shenzhou Quantum are worth watching considering the enormous patent portfolios they are building.
Approximately 72% of the academic patent families published in QIT since 2012 have been from Chinese universities. US universities are a distant second with 12%.
Quantum computer manufacturers tend to be based in North America while non-manufacturers, dominated by Asian organizations are focusing on quantum cryptology and communication within the QIT field.
North American organizations may control the computer, but Asian organizations may end up controlling how those machines are used.