JD.com, a Chinese e-commerce giant applies for over 200 blockchain patents, while a major e-commerce competitor Alibaba applied for 262, Chinese internet titans Tencent and Baidu applied for 80 and 50 such patents respectively, as recorded by the Intellectual Property Center of China Information and Communication and reported by Securities Daily News on May 20.
As per the data provided by Intellectual Property Center of China Information and Communication, JD.com was in first place for “global blockchain patent strength,” with Alibaba, Tencent, and Baidu taking the second, seventh, and fifteenth place, respectively. The report went on to note that China has evolved a global forerunner in blockchain applications.
Reportedly, China has filed 4,435 blockchain patent applications from 2013 to 2018, i.e. 48% of global blockchain patent filings according to tp the “Blockchain Patent Situation White Paper (Version 1.0)” published by the official website for China Telecom. The runner up in the global patent space was the United States, with almost 21% and 1,833 blockchain patents in total.
Securities Daily further broke down patent filings by industry, companies accounted for 75% of applicants, outnumbering the quantity filed by research institutions, individuals, and government agencies by a vast number. Moreover, of that 75 %, the majority of companies that filed were Internet-related.
Further, The Intellectual Property Center of China Information and Communication notes that intellectual property infringements have been an issue in the past for Chinese blockchain patents, and reportedly advises:
“It is recommended that the government do a good job in industry supervision and supervision and patent quality improvement. Enterprises should raise awareness of intellectual property protection and risk prevention, avoid blind investment in the blockchain field, apply for low-value patents, and avoid future blockchains. There have been a large number of infringement lawsuits in the field.”
Reportedly, JD.com released a blockchain-as-a-service (BaaS) platform JD Blockchain Open Platform in 2018 that will purportedly allow organizations to streamline blockchain creation and run smart contracts. JD.com has also helped create institutes for blockchain research, such as the Smart City Research Institute and a blockchain research lab.