Throughout my time helping Invention Ideas develop numerous different projects, this conundrum has often reared its head. It is essential to say from the outset that there is absolutely no definitive answer, however i will make an effort 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 and the answer will differ depending on the specific idea.
Having said that, below are the premiere factors behind building a prototype before patenting:
A patent application demands a certain level of detail regarding the way the idea functions. This is known as ‘sufficiency’ or even an ‘enabling disclosure’. It is often much easier to describe, and draw, an invention once a prototype has been given and tested.
Prototyping develops the thought and it might be which a new or better option would be achieved. Potentially these iterative developments could require altering the original patent application or filing a whole new application. This could cost more or bring about advantageous changes being left unprotected.
The grace period before substantial fees and important decisions have to be made through the patenting process is very short, considering the average time it takes to launch a whole new product to the market. It could be argued that it is preferable to progress the thought as far as possible before filing the patent application, including finalising the design through prototyping. This would then enable the grace period to be used for manufacturing or licensing the product.
A prototype may be used to test the market and some people take into consideration that it is best to accomplish this before embarking on a potentially expensive Inventhelp Office strategy. (Disclosing the thought can prevent a granted patent being achieved and legal services needs to be taken on how to test the current market without forfeiting potential patenting opportunities. Confidentiality agreements are just one way of protecting a concept before a patent application continues to be filed.)
A prototype may prove that the idea is not really viable therefore saving the cost and time involved in drafting and filing a patent application.
Conversely, here are the primary reasons to file a patent application before prototyping:
Prototypes often must be made by companies and therefore it can be wise to file for the patent first to protect the intellectual property.
If the inventor waits for your prototype to get produced before filing the patent application, somebody else may file a software for the same idea first. In lots of countries of the world, such as the UK, the patents systems are ‘first to file’ and not ‘first to invent’.
The patent application process incorporates a thorough worldwide novelty and inventiveness search by the UK IPO that may reveal valuable prior art material, not merely in terms of the direction the prototype should take, but in addition when it comes to potential infringement issues whereby the prototype can then be designed around existing patents.
A patent application as well as the resulting patent, like several intellectual property, provides an asset which is properties of the inventor or applicant company. If prepared effectively, the patent could be licensed or sold to produce money stream potentially without ever having to make the prototype.
It could be better first of all a patent application if funds are limited, as a patent application is generally less than a prototype.
A ‘provisional’ patent application could be filed without requiring great detail, providing a followup application is then filed within one year which describes the thought in greater detail. This may be after the evidence of concept supplied by the prototype.
There are several ways round these complaints. Prototyping manufacturers can be asked to sign a confidentiality agreement ahead of the idea is disclosed. However bear in mind that most companies is not going to sign confidentiality agreements, since their in-house departments might be concentrating on similar ideas. Pre-application patent searches could be performed just before prototyping or patenting to discover whether it is sensible to proceed without needing to draft and file an application.
You will find a third perspective for consideration. Some skilled professionals would suggest that it’s not a patent or prototype which should come first nevertheless the opinion of skilled professionals whether the concept is viable and definately will sell. They would reason that the prototype and patent are very important parts of the process but, at the start, it’s advisable to ascertain that there is truly a market before purchasing either a patent or prototype.
To conclude, the best way to proceed with any new product idea is New Invention. In the event the novel functionality in the idea is unproven, then a prototype may be a sensible starting point. It is actually worth ensuring that a fbmsjf clients are utilized to make the prototype and this 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 could be incurred to re-file or amend the applying as the project is developed.