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Report: UK Great with Blockchain Patents, but China Takes the AI Cake

Reading Time: 2 minutes by on January 22, 2019 Adoption, Blockchain, Commentary, News, Regulation

It doesn’t take much expertise to know that two of the largest technological trends in modern times are blockchain technology and artificial intelligence (AI). While many countries all over the world are interested in how AI can apply to everything from the financial sector to the military sector; there are also many governments who are unsure about how to regulate the cryptocurrency markets without stifling blockchain innovation.

The professional services firm UHY Hacker-Young, known widely throughout the UK, has recently concluded that the UK ranks high when it comes to blockchain patents. However, it appears as though the country might be slacking with regards to artificial intelligence patents.

By the Numbers

The UK is well aware of cryptocurrency in general, as a recent survey concluded that over 90 percent of the population know what Bitcoin is, which is higher than many other countries around the world. It also ranked fourth in the world with regards to blockchain patents in 2017, as it filed 11 percent of all blockchain patents that year.

Chinese businesses filed almost a third of all blockchain patents in the world and came in as the clear leader with 32 percent of all blockchain patents. China was followed by the United States and Australia, respectively. No other country in the European Union cracked the top ten.

British Blockchain Global Rankings

(Source: UHY Hacker Young)

China Is the AI Leader

The U.K. filed only two patents in 2017 related to artificial intelligence, while China filed the vast majority of patents worldwide. Specifically, the Asian superpower filed 473 out of the total 608 patents related to artificial intelligence. For those wondering about the single company that filed the most patents relating to AI in 2017, the answer is Baidu, which is widely considered the “Google of China,” with 183 filed.

The United States came in second with 65, but it is obvious that China clearly dominates the AI patent sector, as it filed over 75 percent of the patents in 2017 related to the sector.

British AI Global Rankings

(Source: UHY Hacker Young)

Many are worried about the decrease in patent filing with regard to artificial intelligence specifically because of the political climate in the UK. There are various companies that are thinking about leaving the country due to the financial uncertainty that might result due to an impending Brexit.

Andrew Snowdon, a partner at UHY Hacker Young’s London office, elaborated on the situation, stating that the UK should be securing more intellectual property to remain a global technological hub. He said:

“If the UK is to maintain its strong position as a hub for new technology, the Government needs to ensure more businesses patent their Intellectual Property.”

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