As patent wars continue in many telecom market sectors, it may be worth noting which companies in the enterprise communications market have a particular strength in patent holdings. Avaya announced it continues to see its ranking rise on the Intellectual Property Owners Association's list of "Top 300 Organizations Granted U.S. Patents in 2011."
The enterprise vendor that was once part of Alcatel-Lucent precursor Lucent Technologies, and thus well-connected with patent farm Bell Labs, has seen its ranking in the list rise for three years. That ranking improved to 114th last year from 128th in 2010. The company had 246 patents awarded in 2011.
According to Avaya, some of its recent patents include:
- Automatic customer satisfaction monitoring through social media.
- Agent-assisted response to social media interactions.
- Context-aware office space locator.
- Contact center expert identification.
- Single-sided speech quality measurement.
Companies such as Microsoft and Google have been busily acquiring technology patents in recent years. Just last week, Microsoft acquired 800 patents from Internet pioneer AOL. And of course, Google nabbed a treasure trove of patents when it acquired Motorola Mobility. As different segments of enterprise communications, such as cloud, unified communications and social enterprise, begin to take off, one of the side effects is likely to be an increase in patent disputes and litigation. It is one of the ironic milestones every market passes as it becomes viable and mature.
- here's the Avaya press release