Throughout my time helping How To Get A Patent On An Idea develop a multitude of different projects, this conundrum has often reared its head. It is essential to say from the outset that there is absolutely no definitive answer, but I will try to convey the alternative perspectives, to allow inventors to make an informed choice for themselves. The opinions about this topic vary across professionals in the IP industry as well as the answer will differ depending on the specific idea.
Having said that, listed here are the main reasons for developing a prototype before patenting:
A patent application demands a certain level of detail regarding just how the idea functions. This is known as ‘sufficiency’ or even an ‘enabling disclosure’. It is usually simpler to describe, and draw, an invention once a prototype has been given and tested.
Prototyping develops the thought and it could be that a new or better solution is achieved. Potentially these iterative developments could require altering the first patent application or filing a whole new application. This may will cost more or result in advantageous changes being left unprotected.
The grace period before substantial fees and important decisions have to be made through the patenting process is fairly short, taking into consideration the average time it takes to launch a new product onto the market. It may be argued that it is better to progress the thought whenever possible before filing the patent application, including finalising the design through prototyping. This would then enable the grace period to be utilized for manufacturing or licensing the product.
A prototype can be used to test the current market and some people consider that it is advisable to do this before embarking on a potentially expensive How To Patent An Idea With Inventhelp strategy. (Disclosing the thought can prevent a granted patent being achieved and legal advice needs to be taken regarding how to test the current market without forfeiting potential patenting opportunities. Confidentiality agreements are one way of protecting an idea before a patent application has become filed.)
A prototype may prove that this idea is not really viable therefore saving the fee and time involved in drafting and filing a patent application.
Conversely, below are the key good reasons to file a patent application before prototyping:
Prototypes often have to be produced by companies and for that reason it can be wise to apply for the patent first to safeguard the intellectual property.
In the event the inventor waits for that prototype to become produced before filing the patent application, somebody else may file an application for the very same idea first. In many countries of the world, like the UK, the patents systems are ‘first to file’ and never ‘first to invent’.
The patent application process includes a thorough worldwide novelty and inventiveness search through the UK IPO that may reveal valuable prior art material, not only regarding the direction the prototype should take, but additionally with regards to potential infringement issues whereby the prototype are able to be designed around existing patents.
A patent application as well as the resulting patent, like several intellectual property, gives an asset that is belonging to the inventor or applicant company. If prepared effectively, the patent could be licensed or sold to produce money stream potentially without ever needing to make the prototype.
It may be better first of all a patent application if funds are limited, as being a patent application is normally less than a prototype.
A ‘provisional’ patent application can be filed without requiring great detail, providing a followup application will then be filed within 12 months which describes the thought in more detail. This can be following the evidence of concept supplied by the prototype.
There are some ways round these complaints. Prototyping manufacturers can have to sign a confidentiality agreement ahead of the idea is disclosed. However be aware that a lot of companies is not going to sign confidentiality agreements, since their in-house departments might be concentrating on similar ideas. Pre-application patent searches may be completed just before prototyping or patenting to find out be it sensible to proceed without needing to draft and file a software.
There exists a third perspective for consideration. Some skilled professionals would claim that it’s not a patent or prototype which should come first however the opinion of skilled professionals as to if the thought is viable and can sell. They would debate that the prototype and patent are very important elements of this process but, on the beginning, it’s better to ascertain there is actually a market before purchasing either a patent or prototype.
In summary, the best way to proceed with any new product idea is Inventhelp Store Products. In the event the novel functionality of the idea is unproven, then this prototype might be a sensible starting point. It really is worth ensuring that a fbmsjf company is used to make the prototype which a confidentiality agreement is signed ahead of the concept being revealed. Alternatively, the inventor may choose to file a patent application first and accept that additional cost may be incurred to re-file or amend the application form since the project is developed.