As the number of patent applications is a good measure of innovation activities, to evaluate the WiFi technology innovation activities, more than 4000 issued patents in the USPTO obtained from the carefully constructed keyword search are reviewed. Patent disclosures in claims and detail description for each patent are analyzed as to whether the contents are within the scope of key technologies (e.g. modulation & coding, PHY & MAC frames & functions, Access Control etc.) for the IEEE 802.11 a/b/g/e/i/n standard specifications.
More than 8oo issued patents are identified as the key patents for the IEEE 802.11 a/b/g/e/i/n standard specifications as of 1Q 2015. Among 85 IPR holders, Marvell is the leader followed by Intel, Samsung, Qualcomm, Sony, Cisco, Broadcom, Philips, Texas Instruments and Toshiba.
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