Topics Covered in this article
What is the concept of a patent?
A patent is a government-granted proprietary right to an invention. It gives the patent holder rights for the invention for a set period of time, which ranges from country to country. A patent is an intellectual property right given by the Patent and Trademark Office to an individual or legal body (such as a corporation). The right given is “the right to prevent anyone from producing, using, offering for sale, or selling” the patented technology in that jurisdiction, as well as from importing it into that country.
Patent Validity in India?
Any patent in India is valid for twenty years from the date of application, regardless of whether it is filed with a provisional or full specification. The term of twenty years starts on the priority date for applications submitted under the Patent Cooperative Treaties (PCT).
What is the Importance of Patents as Documents?
For academic scholars, traditional scientific journals such as journal papers, books, and conference proceedings have been the primary sources of evidence. Patent papers are becoming an increasingly valuable key academic knowledge source as technology and invention advance. Patents are government-issued patents that give inventors the exclusive right to develop, use, and sell their inventions. In return, inventors must provide a detailed description of their innovation so that anyone can learn from it. Patent documents have certain benefits over other types of information sources due to their special features. 1. Each year, about 600,000 patents are awarded globally, spanning nearly every technological area. Patents typically reveal the most recent invention or method, so they are helpful for researchers to keep up with the latest developments in a field and generate ideas for future innovation. 3. Patent documents frequently follow a standard format. Patent papers must provide a detailed description of the invention in addition to bibliographic material and abstract pages.
What is a database?
A database is a logically ordered set of data that can be efficiently viewed, maintained, and modified. Databases can be grouped into four categories of content in one view: bibliographic, full-text, numeric, and photographs. Patent databases are important because patent information is often unavailable in developed countries. Even in developed nations, determining the patent rights of a single product poses major challenges. There are several patents for a wide variety of products. Patent implementations are sometimes easy to find.
Patents In India
Owing to a lack of online directories that have full patent records and useful search facilities, searching for patents in India is a difficult job. Since the Indian Patent Office does not yet have a robust official database, a search must be done using several outlets. Official gazettes, internet sources, and the patent register are some of the most valuable sources of patent data in India.
The Indian Patent Office publishes updates on patent filings as well as reports on approved patent applications in its official gazette. The gazette includes relatively little information about applications that have been submitted. The gazette contains information on approved applications such as the applicant number, title, abstract, filing date, assignee information, inventor information, priority information, charges, and so on. The official gazette is available for inspection at the patent office’s archive. In addition, beginning January 21, 2005, the Patent Office began publishing official journals, which are now available in pdf format on the Patent Office website. Every Friday, certain articles are written, and hard copies are available at the office. The papers have bibliographic information on published software and patents that have been awarded.
Databases on the Internet
To date, no single online source has been able to provide a detailed patent quest for Indian Patent Office applications and patents issued. However, there are many private and public libraries where one can obtain information on Indian patents. There are over 180 patent offices in various regions around the world, each working in a different language. With this detail, it’s worth mentioning that only three patent offices, the US Patent and Trademark Office, the European Patent Office, and the Japan Patent Office, collectively known as the Trilateral Patent Offices, account for more than two-thirds of all patent filings worldwide. As a result, it is important for every patent archive to contain records from these jurisdictions. Patent offices in the trilateral countries, as well as several other countries, provide internet searches of their patent papers.
Patent Reach is the World Intellectual Property Organization’s public archive of records for Primary Care Trust international patent applications. It comprises roughly 1.7 million foreign applications released between 1978 and the present. In 2009, WIPO added national patent collections from the African Regional Intellectual Property Organization, Cuba, Israel, Korea, Mexico, Singapore, South Africa, and Vietnam to Patent Scope. Korea (1.3 million documents from 1973 to 2007), Mexico (180,000 documents from 1991 to 2009), and Israel are the most numerous (144,000 documents from 1900-1999). WIPO has debuted a new search interface that includes quick, hierarchical, and browse features, as well as the ability to view search results as tables or graphs. It has a Search feature as well as an Advanced Search feature. Front Page, Any Area, Full Text, ID/ Number, Int. Classification, Names, and Dates are all searchable options.
The GUI for searching is available in nine different languages. For users who want to use PATENTSCOPE on their web phones, a mobile interface was also developed. PATENTSCOPE Mobile is a simplified and quick version of the interface that allows smartphone users to scan and access millions of patent documents.
Canadian Patents Database (CIPO)
The Canadian Intellectual Property Office’s Canadian Patents Database holds over two million Canadian patents and published applications dating from 1869 to the present. You will search through 92 years of patent definitions and photographs in this archive. More than 2,110,000 patent records are available to browse, retrieve, and review. From 1920 onwards, full-text photographs are available. A few aesthetic updates to the search interface have recently been made, as well as the addition of a representative drawing (if available) in the bibliographic record. Furthermore, as of January 29, 2010, abstracts in both English and French are available for the PCT’s application area.
India’s Official Patent Database
On February 27, 2015, the Indian Patent Advanced Search System (InPASS) was launched. Prior to InPASS, patent searches in India were performed using IPAIRS [Indian Patent Information Retrieval System]. InPASS is a newer version of IPAIRS that allows you to search all Indian patents and patent applications in full text. Users will also use Wild Cards and Boolean Operators to perform a patent quest. Name, abstract, submission number, claimant name, patent number, inventor name, IPC class, and other field constraints are given by the database. Additionally, patents can be checked by priority date, priority country, filing date, or grant date. The archive contains the complete text of the patent document as well as any documentation produced through office acts. The app also has search instructions, which are designed to make it easier to navigate through the system. In addition, the ‘Patent E-register’ tab in InPASS allows a consumer to verify the legal status of a given patent by entering the patent number along with the displayed code and clicking to reveal E-register. The legal status of the patent, the next renewal date, and the patent’s bibliographic details will be shown as a result.
The Indian patent search database, similar to the patent grant page, allows users to verify the status of patent applications in the ‘Application Status’’ column, where they can enter the applicant number and the displayed code. The application number, applicant name, date of filing, priority date, the title of the invention, publishing date, and application status will all be shown in the result. The ‘View Documents’ tab at the bottom of the result page helps the user to view all applicable documents for the patent application.
The Technology Information, Forecasting, and Assessment Council (TIFAC), an independent body under the Department of Science and Technology, is behind Ekaswa. Ekaswa has three databases that contain patent information: Ekaswa A, Ekaswa B, and Ekaswa C.
- Ekaswa A contains bibliographic data on patent applications submitted and published between January 1995 and December 2004.
- From January 1995 to December 2004, Ekaswa B offers bibliographic material on awarded patents;
- From January 2005 onwards, Ekaswa C offers bibliographic material on patent applications submitted and written.
Obtaining Patent Papers
Patent records discovered through a search of each of the sites can be accessed by filing a patent office application. The method for acquiring such records is detailed in Chapter XIII of the Patents Acts, 1970, titled Register of Patents.
A novelty quest can assist a prospective candidate in deciding whether or not anything is innovative. The searcher looks for patent papers that explain how to create and use your invention. While references that are close to the point of innovation can be discovered, the aim is not to decide if an invention is non-obvious. These related references may be used to determine whether or not anything is apparent. However, determining whether the fusion of identical prior art records indicates that the proposed innovation is an apparent variant is too complicated. The assessment of whether a combination of prior art records renders an invention “obvious” is inherently arbitrary and contingent on the examiner assigned to a patent application. A novelty quest involves checking the prior art with the aim of deciding whether an idea is new or novel in relation to current technology. All existing content, including that contained in the public domain or relating to existing technologies, is considered prior art. This information can be used to deny a patent application.
Prior art can also be known as hidden prior art. Even though hidden prior art is not open to the general public, it may be used to deny a later submitted patent application if the first secret patent application matures and becomes public or released. In other words, a patent is called prior art as of the filing date that it is granted or released. Someone doing a novelty quest, on the other hand, would not be able to locate those sources because the hidden reference has not yet been written at the time of the novelty search. While being able to discover these secret references would be ideal, it is a possibility that must be accepted and adjusted during the review process.
What is the value of a novelty search?
A novelty quest is useful for a variety of purposes. First, a novelty quest could turn up prior art documents with an identical explanation of the proposed invention’s point of novelty. In this case, the inventor saves money by not having to file a patent claim. Furthermore, this discovery could cause the inventor to update his or her current concept or try a new one. This will spare the inventor not only the costs of drafting, filing, and prosecuting a patent claim but also the time, resources, and money he or she would have spent developing and selling the invention. This time, resources and money could be better used on developing and promoting new technology.
Informal versus formal novelty searches
When inventors perform their own informal innovation hunt, they usually use an internet search engine such as Google to conduct a standardised, text-based search. However, such a wide search can yield a long list of results, some of which are meaningless. Sifting through all of the findings to find all of the appropriate sources will be a waste of time. Of course, before paying for a formal search, an entrepreneur can perform a fast, informal search. If something is detected that prohibits the inventor from receiving a patent, the inventor will be able to stop paying legal fees to perform a systematic novelty quest.
If an informal search yields no results, a formal search performed by a patent attorney could be the next move. This is since a more detailed class/subclass quest is the proper way to perform a novelty search.
A patent family is a category of patent applications that address the same or related technological subject matter.
Priority arguments connect the applications in a family together.
The below are the goals that have been considered:
•Preliminary documents The Paris Convention describes the first filing as an international submission.
• Initial filings on a proviso basis A temporary first filing in the United States is referred to as a provisional submission in the United States.
• First-time filings alternatives. A US continuation in part is the equivalent of a first filing.
• Applications that are a continuation of a previous parent programme are not qualified for the automatic process.
• Sub-applications of a parent programme
The parent application’s technical material is assumed to be protected by continuations and classes. Regardless of the priority claims that they make, continuations and divisions will still be in the same patent family as the parent application.
Effect of Patent on research and development
While there is a possible connection between patents and new product unveiling activities, it is less clear if there is a direct link between a company’s parenting practices and its results. ‘‘The reasons that patents are relevant also have nothing to do with whether patents offer an opportunity to pursue R&D or allow the company to benefit from the generation of goods on which the innovation was based,” as Hall and Ham (1999, p. 9) put it. Patents are not expected to be a major indicator of firm success, based on the previous discussion:
Patents are favourably linked to R&D expenditures. Others claim that internal research skills, especially those with a strong basic research dimension, are critical to a firm’s ability to produce innovative outputs. It was unexpected to see increased returns to scale in R&D investment. Larger businesses are less creative than smaller businesses. Although increased research and development spending was shown to increase the number of patented patents, this happened at a slower pace. In other words, the most common observation has been that R&D investment in patenting has a diminishing return to scale. The discovery of growing returns to scale goes against much of the current empirical data, but it is in line with economic reasons for the benefits of scale in innovation. A large-scale research project, for example, could be required for a company to follow enough leads to discover those that may lead to patentable discoveries.
Moreover, larger research labs enjoy risk spreading benefits unavailable to smaller labs. As the research and development function increases in size, the possibility of risk reduction across a portfolio of projects enables managers to increasingly pursue a wider range of inventions. Some have argued that as research and development departments continue to grow, their growing access to internal funds gives them significant advantages in purchasing specialised laboratory equipment or hiring specialised personnel required to facilitate a broad R&D portfolio. If the observations confirm these hypotheses, it’s also likely that rising returns are due to a general rise in patenting activities in companies. When companies invest more money on research and growth, they are more likely to rely on patenting their technologies and protective patents to defend their competitive advantage, which may or may not be linked to unique patented goods that may produce revenue. The trend seen in the current data will arise if the firm’s focus is on quantities, a patent arms race, or defensive manoeuvres rather than patents that can be used in combination with other firm-specific tools. Also notable is the fact that, while there is a strong curvilinear association between R&D investment and product announcements, it is a U-shaped relationship rather than the anticipated inverse-U. New product announcements slip as R&D investment grows at first. Brand announcements, on the other hand, continue to rise at high levels of R&D investment. Although these results tend to refute the bulk of existing facts, there is some analysis that backs up the findings. Firm size and creative activity, as measured by the number of new product introductions; R&D efficiency, as measured by R&D production elasticity; and firm age and innovation activity, for example, have all been shown to have a U-shaped relationship.
Effect of patents on acquisitions and mergers of firms and development labs
We can see that a particular cause of synergy—corporate research activity—drives acquisitions and has a favourable effect on merger results using a broad and exclusive patent-merger data collection from 1984 to 2006. We can see that acquirers are more likely to have wide patent portfolios and low R&D costs, while R&D-intensive companies with sluggish growth in patent production are more likely to be purchased. Furthermore, the technical overlap between firms’ innovation practises has a favourable and important impact on the possibility of the creation of a merger pair. We can also see that for firm pairs that also overlap in commodity markets, the favourable impact of technical overlap on the probability of a merger pair forming is diminished. Where there is pre-merger technical overlap between merging companies, we see a favourable treatment impact of a merger on post-merger innovation performance. We believe that synergies arising from the integration of innovation strengths are a strong motivator for corporate mergers and acquisitions.