Purpose - Aims to provide an overall picture of the current status of business methods in e-commerce. Design/methodology/approach - A comprehensive comparison of the business models among countries, sectors and companies is conducted. Insightful evidence on the current state of patenting in business models is also provided. Findings - The findings of the paper in, accordance with the USPTO white paper on business methods, show that patent applications being examined in Class 705 strongly reflect the basic software engineering that underlay each invention Originality/value - This study of business model patents presents information about the character of business method patenting activity and provides valuable insights into the current development of business method technology.
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