Invention Capture and Protection
Business models affect the type of protection - Different businesses have different needs and we offer intellectual property strategies based on your business needs.
Business models affect the type of protection – Different business have different needs and we offer intellectual property strategies based on your business needs. We offer protection with patents, copyrights, trademarks, and trade secrets.
Business models affect enforceability and patent value - Changes in business models, market convergence, and product evolution can impact the value of a patent portfolio as well as individual patents. We prosecute patents taking these factors into account for the life of our clients’ patent and patent portfolio.
As background, patentability does not automatically equate to enforceability nor does it correlate to a value for any one patent or for a patent portfolio. The claims in a patent provide the contours of the legal rights available to the patent owner. However, the claims must meet specific legal requirements to be enforceable in court. If these specific requirements are not met, the patent can still be a valid patent but may not be enforceable in court. Unenforceability is not necessarily a problem if a client has a business need to have patents in a particular area or wants a specific number of patents in their portfolio. This is a business decision by the client. We endeavor to have all patents we prosecute to be enforceable but will adjust as needed per the client’s business needs.
Enforceability does not automatically correlate to a value for a patent or for a patent portfolio. Patents are most valuable when they provide business value. Some examples are to:
assert/litigate a patent against a party having the infringing product with the largest financial means pay for that infringement
exclude competitors’ products from competing with the patent owner’s products covered by the patent being asserted/litigated
license the patent for monetary value, obtain patent rights and technology from others, or to avoid being litigated by others
sell the patent to others
However, changes over time in business models, technology, products, and markets can change the value of a patent and a patent portfolio. These changes can decrease the value but can also increase the value by eliminating opportunities as well as creating new opportunities for patent owners.
Changes in business models are often overlooked by most patent practitioners. As noted above, patent claims must meet specific requirements to be enforceable. As business models for our client’s competitors and the types of companies change through mergers or spinoffs, these changes impact whether or not claims that once met those specific requirements may no longer be so, hence rendering the patent unenforceable.
Changes in technology and product landscape can impact the value of a patent or a patent portfolio. As technology progresses, what is considered a high-end product today can become a mid-range product tomorrow and a low-end product even later down the road. In this constantly evolving product and technology climate, patents covering the high-end products can possibly cover products and product lines over time as the products and product lines continue to evolve. As a counter example, product and market convergence can eliminate products from being sold, which could potentially result in eliminating opportunities for patent owners.
We work with our clients to capture their invention as broadly as possible to cover not only our client's products and markets but also their competitors' products and markets. We also look to cover other products and markets when the invention may be more broadly applicable. We consider not only existing business models, products, and markets but also potential changes in these areas that may affect the value of a patent and a patent portfolio.
Thus, we work with our clients to provide patents and patent portfolios to the business needs of each particular client. Our default approach is to prosecute patents with the United States Patent and Trademark Office and other patent offices around the world to maximize business value for the entire life of the patent. We consider and prosecute patents to accommodate factors, such as business models, product evolution, and market convergence, so our clients have the best opportunity to maintain and potentially to grow the value of their patents and patent portfolio.
Sample technology areas – The following are sample technology areas where we have prosecuted patents. For a more complete list, please contact us.
Semiconductor process technologies:
- Semiconductor process
- Silicon germanium process
- Silicon on insulator process
- Indium phosphide process
- Nonvolatile memory process (NVRAM/Flash)
- Dynamic and static random access memory (DRAM/SRAM) process
- Clock and data recovery (CDR)
- Memory controllers
- Bus controllers
- Processor cores
- Processing arrays
- Interface controllers
Semiconductor/integrated circuit packaging technologies:
- Power devices
- Optical devices
- Multi-chip devices
- Wafer-scale chip level devices
Board level technologies:
- Signal integrity
- Embedded circuits
Test and manufacturing technologies:
- Test bench systems
- Tester systems
- Characterization systems
- Manufacturing systems
- Testability (device, board, system levels)
- Network testers
- Wireless (mobile and base station)
- Test Bench
- User Interface
- Machine Learning
- Privacy protocols
- Test Bench