Why? What? When? How? These are some of the most used words in John’s dictionary. He’s pretty curious about the workings behind what happens in his life, and many of those have to do with the inventions and the workings of intellectual property in the world around him.
John knows by now that patent searches, while not strictly a part of the patent application procedure, are unavoidable for anyone looking to protect their technology. But there are many types of patent searches, and sometimes he’s not sure which ones are the most relevant for a specific scenario. now that he knows a little more about Freedom to Operate searches, he’s interested in knowing more about patent Landscape searches. IP geek is happy to answer his questions.
Hey there, IP Geek.
I know that a patentability search checks the invention for novelty, and a freedom to operate search sees what possible problems a product can run into when it’s put on the market.
But what about a patent landscape search? Is that important too?
Good to see you, John.
The importance of a search isn’t inherent to the search- it depends on what use that search has to the person doing it. A patent landscape search is one of the more detailed and expansive searches, and it looks into a lot of data to see the big picture.
IPG:We need to understand that patent applications contain a wealth of information. Studies have shown that at least 70 percent of the information published in patents is not found anywhere else. Patents are obviously where almost all cutting edge technology is concentrated.
So if you want to know the state (or the landscape) in any field of technology, looking at the patents in that field is a valuable tool. And that is exactly what a patent landscape search is. An overview of the existing technology in an area of research.
This search seems like it’s even more detailed than an FTO search. But why would someone want to know about existing technology when they are not actively looking to launch a product or patent?
Plenty of reasons! A patent landscape search is a long-term strategy tool that provides insight into a field of research. It can be used by researchers, business developers, recruiters, and lawyers to get the lay of the land. Then they can use this information to better strategize their future projects.
A patent landscape search takes a lot of work and not everyone chooses to do it, but it does give any tech or research based organization a lot of leads, ideas, and pain points to work on. It reduces the risk of wasted investments and potential legal threats.
Okay, I can see why that would be something desirable, especially for the upper management of an organization. Thanks for letting me know, IP Geek.
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