Clients in highly competitive environments want to know what their competitors are designing and the direction(s) that they are going in the future. Clients also want to know if new competitors are entering important markets or if existing competitors are expanding into new areas.
Patent alerts or watches monitor published patent applications and newly issued patents from specifically identified competitors or in identified technology fields. Consistent review of competitor patent activity provides insight into competitor’s future plans, alerts you to potentially problematic patent properties and may identify acquisition properties.
If problem patents are identified early, developing products can be designed to limit risks related to the patents or to improve upon competitive designs. One may also seek a license or other business arrangement with the owner of a problematic patent before a new product launch and/or the validity of the patent may be investigated prior to launch of a new product. Watches also provide an opportunity to consider initiating proceedings to challenge the patent through patent offices, before expensive federal litigation is filed.
Patent watches and alerts can be a valuable tool to keep you one step ahead of your competitors.
To learn more about how Panitch Schwarze Belisario & Nadel LLP intellectual property lawyers can help you, contact us.