PATENT SEARCH IS NOW EASY WITH DATABASE TOOLS
In present scenario, the patent searches are conducted to access the current market status and competitiveness of a product. Patent searches are mainly conducted by companies/corporate to manage their technological portfolio and to have knowledge about their competitor’s business strategies. The patent searches are also conducted to determine the vital criteria of Patentability such as novelty, non-obviousness and industrial applicability. For a particular goal of a search, the patent searches are conducted either worldwide or with limitation to particular jurisdiction, and sometimes in reference to the priority date of their invention. As per search requirements, the search is conducted over both patent and non-patent literatures. However in this article we will talk about the steps to make patent search on patent literature using patent databases.
Fundamental Strategy for Patent Search
For conducting a patent search a clear-cut idea about the technology is essential along with the methodology.
Subsequent steps will provide the simple method of patent search using database tools:
- Pinpoint the Technology – First and foremost is understanding the technology of the invention;
- Pick out the Key Terminology – identify the key words of the invention, which better describes the technology;
- Select the Search Database Tools – Choose databases for analysis;
- Perform Keyword based Search – keyword based search is conducted using general search option available in tools, to search documents with specific key terminology. This search option works along with truncations (+, ?, #) and operators (OR, AND, NOT..) to obtain required text and key concepts of relevant documents;
- Identify specific Patent Classes – To make search more relevant, patent classes can be identified from mined reference patents.
It can be done, either by identifying the pertinent classes that are cited in relevant patent documents,
Or by using patent classification dictionaries for International Patent Classification (IPC), US Patent Classification (USPC), Cooperative Patent Classification (CPC), European Patent Classification (ECLA), FI and F term of Japan, and so on.
- Conduct Classification based Search – then conduct classification code search using the option in tools.
- Analyze and Make out a Final Report – analyze all obtained patent documents that are published within specific classes; finally, prepare a report of the search using the patents documents that are more pertinent to the target invention.
Database Tool provide options to make Searches even more unique:
Search engines may operate by combining both keyword and classification code together to obtain exact relevant patent documents for specific technology from massive data. Search engines may also conduct analysis such as FTO or infringement, using patent number search option with different criteria such as patent number, publication number, application number and priority number. The database tools have options to handle search queries exclusively for specific companies or particular applicant or inventors to provide more comprehensive and precise results.
Patent Search is mandatory for companies- why?
Patents are one of the foremost assets for a technology based company. They require patent searches for making various decisions like:
- Whether to file a patent application or not, they conduct a Patentability search.
- Whether they are free to operate in a market, they need to carry out Freedom to Operate (FTO) Search.
- To keep an eye over technological advancement and advantages of a competitor, they need to watch patent news updates regularly.
- To invalidate/oppose somebody’s patent they require an invalidation/opposition search
- To re-assure validity of their own patent, they need to conduct validation search
- To identify past and current technological advancement, they require a landscape search.
Given above are some benefits, however, Patent search has vide utility for corporate, it furnish them by answering many unanswered questions.