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AI Patent Landscape – Patent Analysis and FAQs

The discussion of AI patents requires a thorough review of the global AI patent landscape. There has been a study that examines EU patents from 1990 through 2021. 34% of patents don’t come under AI. Many patents incorporate AI, though. We found AI patents in computer vision, medical diagnostics, and speech recognition. Most AI patents involve accelerators and hardware with software logic to speed up training and inference. Software and hardware accelerators can be designed. Examples include hardware designed for parallel training or inference and architectures that exploit tensor sparsity. Knowing the innovative AI method helps identify patentable AI. More patents are predicted as more companies develop these technologies’ uses. In terms of patent applicants, various companies dominate the artificial intelligence patent filing. Four universities make the top ten. Microsoft, Samsung, NEC, and Apple each have over 1,000 AI patents. Also, many inventions are collaborations. The quantity of patents these corporations file depends on the country’s patents. Essentially, AI patent landscape shows a growth in AI patents, ML patents and patents for digital inventions.

AI patent attorney

AI Patent FAQs

Here are few frequently asked questions regarding AI patents.

Can AI inventions be patented?

Yes, AI inventions may be patented as a combination of hardware patent claims and software patent claims if the overall patent claims satisfy the patent eligibility criteria. To secure a patent, an artificial intelligence (AI) invention must provide measurable results. Independent claims for AI inventions may require additional details, such as the specific hardware configuration and the algorithms used to implement them. The phrase “better classifier” no longer qualifies as inventive or novel. To qualify as an “AI invention”, a machine learning application must also demonstrate an unexpected technical effect. In particular, few AI inventions would fall under the “mental steps doctrine,” a doctrine that prohibits patenting inventions that mimic human thinking. In short, AI inventions are unlikely to qualify for a patent. However, if the invention provides a method or algorithm that performs actions that can be performed by a human, it might be patentable as a software patent

How do you draft patent claims for machine learning inventions?

While the nature of an invention and the incorporation of machine learning technologies are critical to the success of a patent application, the strategy employed for drafting machine learning patent claims varies. While no one approach works for every patent, a few guidelines can help focus claim drafting efforts. Here are the most important aspects to consider when drafting machine learning patent claims. The best practice is to use relevant examples, specific examples may include the layers of a R-CNN, bounding boxes, and training algorithms.  

The patent attorneys need to ensure to sufficiently cover several alternative technologies, such as supervised and unsupervised algorithms, reinforcement learning algorithms, and hybrid architectures. AI is an evolving field and case law is in the early stages. To avoid any misunderstandings or potential legal challenges, try drafting separate kinds of machine learning patent claims, which may allow you to cover a wider range of potential uses. Although current patent office practice rejects some claims, future case law developments may allow you to include previously rejected claims.  

While machine learning is a relatively new technology, its applications are likely to be obvious. For that reason, it’s important to concentrate on other aspects of your invention. Consider including a system claim as part of your patent, which protects all of the steps in the machine learning process. This type of claim is common in software patents and should be drafted accordingly. In addition to providing additional details, a machine learning patent claim should also be specific.

How do I prepare for a patent draft?

The key skill for preparing a high-quality patent draft is to focus on the structure of the overall patent application, specifically while drafting the patent claims. Throughout the document, you should provide support for future implementations of the invention. In the case of various connected features of the invention, you should include a dependent claim identifying the alternative implementations. Readers are accustomed to reading documents from the start, so it’s important to start with the background section to describe your invention and its improvement over the prior art. The background section of the document should contain the details of the inventor’s background and what makes it unique and useful.  The description of the invention should be written clearly so that a person skilled in the field could use it. The first section should include a short title and a short explanation of what the invention is. The next section should contain the technical details and how the solution works. Be sure to avoid omitting any information that is irrelevant to the invention. It is important to provide a detailed description of the invention so that the patent examiner can understand it and be able to decide on whether to grant the patent application.

How do you patent an innovation?

The best way to patent an innovation is to seek the assistance of a qualified patent attorney. You have an idea for an invention and want to know if you should try to get a patent for it. Patent protection for innovationis a good way to protect your work, but the process can get complicated if you need to file for patents in more than one country. To avoid this problem, you could file a PCT patent application, which lets you apply for a patent in more than 140 countries. This will give you more time to figure out if your idea can be patented and if it could be sold. Hence, a patent search is advisable.   

But getting a patent can be expensive and take a lot of time. Also, there may already be other ways to protect your idea. It’s also possible that your competitor has already applied for a patent on the same technology. So, it’s important to find out as much as you can about your competitors. Also, some places have rules about “prior user rights,” which only let you do what has already been done. If you make changes in the future, you might break a competitor’s patent. 

Therefore, before you apply for a patent, you should make sure that your new idea can be sold. In other words, you shouldn’t have made it public before applying for a patent. Also, it can’t have been sold or advertised before applying for a patent. Most countries might not be able to protect these ideas with a patent. If you can’t afford to start from scratch with a product, you might want to register it as a design. It also helps to raise the price of the product and encourage research and development.

Do you need a patent for an innovation?

For any new innovation, a patent provides a tool to generate revenue from the innovation by entering into commercial transactions without the risk of invention theft. If you’ve invented something, you know the value of a patent. This provides you exclusive rights to your creation. Thomas Edison invented electric light. The lightbulb is Edison’s tangible idea, so he could patent it. A lightbulb idea wouldn’t be patented.   

A patent gives you exclusive commercial rights to your ideas, techniques, and designs. Patents foster innovation by offering incentives and investment rewards. Patents give you product exclusivity, a strong market position, and licensing revenue. 

Patents have these benefits:   Patents are crucial corporate assets. It’s a market advantage. This is crucial when seeking startup finance. It reassures investors that your product or service won’t be replicated. Patents allow you to sell your idea to consumers or license the patent for monthly fees.   Patents are needed to commercialize biological discoveries. Biotechnology, diagnostic, and pharmaceutical corporations are unlikely to pursue products without patent protection.

In addition to the crucial points stated here relating to AI Patents, the future business models based on innovation may regularly need assistance for Patent Searching. The results of a patent search report can assist in determining if Patent Drafting is the next step for International Patent Filing along with USPTO Patent Filing. In case of blockchain based business models, utility token Legal Opinion Letters may also be needed, along with a set of applicable contracts and agreements.

Our team of advanced patent attorneys assists clients with patent searches, drafting patent applications, and patent (intellectual property) agreements, including licensing and non-disclosure agreements.

Advocate Rahul Dev is a Patent Attorney & International Business Lawyer practicing Technology, Intellectual Property & Corporate Laws. He is reachable at rd (at) patentbusinesslawyer (dot) com & @rdpatentlawyer on Twitter.

Quoted in and contributed to 50+ national & international publications (Bloomberg, FirstPost, SwissInfo, Outlook Money, Yahoo News, Times of India, Economic Times, Business Standard, Quartz, Global Legal Post, International Bar Association, LawAsia, BioSpectrum Asia, Digital News Asia, e27, Leaders Speak, Entrepreneur India, VCCircle, AutoTech).

Regularly invited to speak at international & national platforms (conferences, TV channels, seminars, corporate trainings, government workshops) on technology, patents, business strategy, legal developments, leadership & management.

Working closely with patent attorneys along with international law firms with significant experience with lawyers in Asia Pacific providing services to clients in US and Europe. Flagship services include international patent and trademark filingspatent services in India and global patent consulting services.

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