According to ‘2014 National Patent Strategy Blueprint’ report that was published by Korean Intellectual Property Office and Korean Intellectual Property Strategy Institute on the 7th, ‘Flexible Power Supply’ technology that maximizes utilization of wearable equipments was chosen as the promising technology in the future.

Especially ‘Flexible Battery’ technology that rolls up or folds and ‘Flexible Energy Harvesting’ technology that uses vibration or unused battery receive much attention.

These two technologies save or change electric energy that gets supplied to equipments. Technology that maximizes wearing sensation and improvement of energy harvesting efficiency change dynamics.

It is analyzed that flexible power supply will greatly change future’s daily life than any other technologies because it is possible to implement wearable computing that can be used whenever for variety of Smart Equipments without power supply limit. It can be used as main power or auxiliary power for terminals such as Smartphones and wearable terminals such as bio device, shoes, and watches.

It is expected that there are added values in creation in environment-friendly point of view because there is no limitation in environment unlike previous new and renewable energy like geothermal heat and wind power. Installation of large-sized equipments is not needed as well.

Patent activity related to flexible power supply is more active than expected. Continuous application after 2000 is still happening, and it is predicted that this trend will last for awhile.

Japanese companies led development in technologies in flexible battery area early, and Korean companies are after them.

Panasonic has the most patents at 140, and Samsung SDI and LG Chemical are after it with 122 and 88 each respectively. Sanyo and Sony also have many related patents.

Although Japanese companies have the edge quantitatively, Korean companies are better than them qualitatively. Samsung SDI and LG Chemical are number 1 and 2 respectively in qualitative evaluation, which says that they have many high-quality patents.

Aspect of flexible energy harvesting field is different from battery. The U.S. and Sweden companies lead in developing technologies. Siemens, UC universities, and GE are concentrating on applying for related patents, and Sweden’s ABB is also focusing on developing technologies.

Level of qualitative standard of flexible energy harvesting patent that ABB possesses is especially high. Unlike flexible batteries, Korean companies’ activities in patents related to energy harvesting field is insignificant.

Danger for lawsuits in patents regarding flexible power supply is slowly increasing. In flexible battery field where Korean companies are emphasizing on, there are many Non-Practicing Entities (NPE) that are showing aggressive tendencies are lining up. Round rock Research, Intellectual Ventures, and Taiwan’s ITRI that attacked Korean companies many times are the most major ones.

*Detailed information can be found on IP Nomics’ homepage (

Staff Reporter Lee, Kangwook |

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<■Major applicants in flexible battery technology Order of major applicants with most patents in flexible battery technology is, 1. Panasonic (Japan, 140) 2. Samsung SDI (Korea, 122) 3. LG Chemical (Korea, 88) 4. Sanyo Electric (Japan, 67), 5. Sony (Japan, 64). >
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<■Major applicants in flexible energy harvesting technology Order of major applicants with most patents in flexible energy harvesting technology is, 1. Siemens (US, 47) 2. ABB AB (Sweden, 21) 3. Canon (Japan, 19) 4. University of California (US, 17), 5. General Electric (US, 14). >