You've probably heard the saying 'Patents drive innovation' at one point or another and whether you agree with it or not, it's a part of what Thomson Reuters uses to determine their Top 100 Global Innovators study. Going on its third year now, the Top 100 Global Innovators study uses patents as a proxy for innovation and looks at companies who invest more in R&D and this year, BlackBerry is on the list for the first time.

The intense competition in the smartphone space is on clear display in this year’s Top 100 Global Innovators list, with the major players in the smartphone patent wars present: Apple, Microsoft, Samsung, Google and BlackBerry. This is the first year for BlackBerry on the Top 100 Innovators list, driven by a 38 percent surge in patent filings between 2010 and 2011, and 17 percent growth in patent filings between 2011 and 2012.  The rapid expansion of the company’s patent portfolio is certain to be a factor in BlackBerry’s recently-announced plans to pursue strategic alternatives, including a possible sale.

3,586 unique inventions between January 1, 2010 – December 31, 2012 as noted by Thomson Reuters specifically. That's quite a bit of R&D working happening right there. If you're looking for further details into the metrics and the full roll call of companies on the list this year, you can hit the link below to view more details.

Thomson Reuters Top 100 Global Innovators