Pedram Sameni
Dec 14, 2023

Patent Insight 1: Apple’s Top Ten Patent Firms in 2023

Patent Prosecution

In response to the overwhelming interest in our weekly Insights, covering the entire spectrum of Intellectual Property (IP), we are excited to announce an expansion of our offerings. Patexia will now deliver a monthly Patent Insight Letter, specifically tailored to the nuances of Patent Prosecution. Launching this month, our goal is to delve deeper into the multifaceted world of U.S. patent prosecution. Each edition will focus on a single study powered by our data, examining the evolving landscape of the sector, encompassing growth, decline, strategic lateral movements, and expansions within various law firms. This initiative underscores our commitment to providing comprehensive, in-depth analysis, and updates in the field of IP.



Today, we turn our attention to one of the tech industry's powerhouses, Apple Inc., and the legal orchestration steering its patent strategy with select law firms playing pivotal roles in safeguarding and advancing the company's IP interests. According to our most recent Patent Intelligence Report 2023 released last March, our study from January 2018 to December 2022 revealed that Apple secured a total of 14,788 patents, encompassing 12,309 utility patents. As the USPTO typically publishes applications approximately 18 months after submission, analyzing published applications serves as an indicator of the company's patent filing trends within a specific timeframe. The chart below illustrates Apple's utility patents and published applications per year over the last five years, incorporating data for the year 2023 as of the latest update on December 5th.



In 2022, Apple was granted 2,282 patents, signifying a noteworthy milestone in its ongoing pursuit of innovation. The peak in patent issuance occurred in 2020, totaling 2,801 patents. Despite fluctuations, these figures underscore Apple's unwavering dedication to innovation and the creation of intellectual property across diverse technological domains in recent years.

This was achieved through collaboration with a network of 47 different law firms, each engaging at varying levels of partnership and collaboration. The following table provides an overview of the top 10 law firms that collaborated with Apple during the specified period (January 1, 20218 through December 31, 2022) based on their activity, highlighting key patent-related metrics. These include the number of patents issued, allowance rates, claims allowance, average office actions, extensions, and the pendency in months. This data sheds light on the activity, performance, and efficacy of these law firms in managing Apple's patent portfolio, offering valuable insights into their strategic handling of patent applications and interactions with patent offices during this timeframe.



Law Firm % of Activity Patents


Office Actions (Avg) Extensions

Pendency (months)

Kowert, Hood, Munyon, Rankin & Goetze 17.43% 2,119 99.49% 1.5 400 28.3
Treyz Law Group 8.60% 1,046 99.05% 1.92 76 27.3
Dentons 7.38% 897 100.00% 1.91 1,028 32.2
Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton 6.44% 783 91.83% 1.45 480 27.6
Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck 5.93% 721 99.18% 2.02 400 32.2
Morgan Lewis & Bockius 5.83% 709 99.72% 1.87 413 31.9
Dickinson Wright PLLC 4.56% 555 100.00% 1.86 337 31.5
Womble Bond Dickinson 4.52% 550 99.64% 2.08 562 33.2
Blank Rome LLP 4.05% 492 98.81% 1.77 342 32.4
Fletcher Yoder, P.C. 3.90% 474 97.94% 1.84 132 30.6



When it comes to securing design patents, Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox, and Saidman Design Law Group, have been the go-to law firms for  Apple.

Patexia is thrilled to announce the major update of its website with a brand new design, covering countless Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for all patent attorneys and agents, patent firms, and organizations with US patent portfolios. The updated platform provides insights into key clients, attorneys, teammates, examiners, and more. Most of these metrics are offered free of charge to the IP community. Annually, we assess and rank all stakeholders based on their activity and performance. Our latest update is scheduled for release next March (Patent Intelligence Report 2024).

Our aim is to assist corporate IP counsels in making well-informed decisions regarding the performance and activity of their outside counsels, offering guidance through a data-driven approach.

Through our Concierge subscription program, we provide a comprehensive view of the IP landscape. It operates on a modular basis, enabling subscribers to select modules that best fit their individual requirements. For instance, the screenshot below showcases the top five examiners who have handled Apple’s patent applications over the past five years.


Our commitment to providing unparalleled insights extends beyond these profiles. For each entity, we have calculated activity and performance rankings. These Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) encompass a wide range of vital metrics, including the number of filed applications, issued patents, average office actions, extensions, pendency, annually issued patents, and the current application status, among others. Moreover, our data sheds light on crucial aspects of entities, such as top-served clients, countries of origin for patent applications, specific technology centers, and IPC codes.

Stay tuned as, next month in January 2024, we will be releasing insights related to patent prosecution.