We’ve witnessed significant upheavals in the patent system in the last few years, ranging from a surprisingly active Supreme Court that has weighed in on patent law, major legal changes that have impacted the validity of patents in litigation (particularly software patents) and repeated unsuccessful attempts at patent reform.As a result, there is a sentiment amongst some lawyers that patent protection is the weakest it has been in a long time. Yet, patent litigation filings nearly hit an all-time high in 2015.We enter 2016 with some mixed signals regarding the value of patents for technology companies. Many are preaching a death of patent rights and are questioning whether to invest in patents.Will patents continue to be a worthwhile corporate investment? Is the recent trend a bubble of devaluation that will pop? We’ve identified some IP (intellectual property) trends that are important for companies planning their IP investments for 2016 and beyond.