As reported on Hunton’s Blockchain Legal Resource blog, in the race to develop blockchain technology, companies are increasingly devoting capital to creating proprietary blockchain solutions. A search of the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office (“USPTO”) as of today returns 355 patent applications that contain either “blockchain” or “distributed ledger” in the abstract. Patents are being filed related to a wide variety of industries and applications, including supply chain management, autonomous deliveries, energy networks, electronic health records, 3D printing, travel itinerary management, data security and securing rights to digital media.
The list below is not exhaustive, and represents a sample of some of the blockchain-related patent applications that have been publicly released during the last few months.
Cisco Technology, Inc.
- “Apparatus And Method to Perform Secure Data Sharing in a Distributed Network by Using a Blockchain”
General Electric Company
Mastercard International Incorporated
- “Method and System for Travel Itinerary Bidding Via Blockchain”
- “Methods and Systems for Authenticating Coupons Via Blockchain”
- “Method and System for Net Settlement by Use of Cryptographic Promissory Notes Issued on a Blockchain”
International Business Machines Corporation
- “Tracking Shipments with a Local and Remote Blockchain”
- “Blockchain-Based Food Product Shelf-Life Management”
- “Trustable Web Searching Verification in a Blockchain”
- “Autonomous Peer-to-Peer Energy Networks Operating on a Blockchain”
- “Detecting Medical Fraud and Medical Misuse Using a Shared Virtual Ledger”
- “Blockchain Gaming”
- “Verifying Reviews on a Blockchain”
Sony Corporation / Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc.
Walmart Stores, Inc.