How can you Patent your Mobile App Idea?

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mobile app development

A patent is required to protect a unique app idea from copycats in the marketplace who may try to steal it. However, in order to be subject to patent law, your app idea must be novel and unique. If it’s a clone of another app, your efforts will be in vain.

“How to patent a mobile app” is one of the most frequently asked questions by startups and entrepreneurs before beginning mobile app development. If you have a unique app idea, we will cover the ultimate guide to patenting a mobile app idea before discussing it with an app development team.

What Does It Mean to Patent a Mobile App Concept?

In layman’s terms, a patent is a type of intellectual property law.

Protects your app concepts from unauthorized and/or non-consensual use.

Other companies or individuals are prohibited from changing or selling it, as you are the rightful owner of your app idea.

Ensures that no one profits or loses money by claiming credit for your unique idea falsely.

Why would you want to trademark an app concept?

Your app idea qualifies for protection because it is your sole intellectual property. With an official patent, you have the legal right to seek compensation from anyone who attempts to break current patent laws. The following are the primary reasons for patenting an app concept:

Every clone of your original application that is introduced before or in the lineup with the latter can be legally accused.

Your patent establishes the app’s uniqueness and originality in the eyes of the law.

Your mobile app idea will not be financially exploited by any shrewd party.

What Are the Eligibility Requirements to Get a Patent?

A mobile app idea’s patent eligibility is determined by three key factors. The following are the details:

1. It Has to Be a New Idea

Patents are used to protect new inventions. They are provided to the invention that is explained as a solution to every issue, according to WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization). The app process is classified as an invention because the mobile app idea is not a physical thing. Nonetheless, the procedure, like any other invention, should resolve all issues.

2. Your app concept should be fresh and original.

Even if your mobile app idea solves a problem for users, it may not be eligible for a patent. Your application concept should be fresh and unique. It should not have been made public earlier, and it should not have included YouTube videos, books, articles, pending patent apps, and other sources. It must be unique and not already be in use; otherwise, you will not be able to patent it.

3. It Must Be Considered Useful

Being classified as a useful app does not rule out the possibility of your app falling into the entertainment category or something similar. All your apps needs to do is work, at least in theory. This restriction prevents people from patenting ineffective apps.

As a result, in order to claim your app as an asset, you must write a detailed and concrete description of how it works.

How to Determine Whether or Not Your App Idea Has Been Patented

Check to see if a potentially unique mobile apps idea has already been patented by someone else. As a result, every associated app idea that is either pending or marketed requires a thorough investigation. Your state or country will have a database where this information can be stored and accessed. Furthermore, you can search the WIPO’s IPC Catchword Index, which contains information on various international patents. You will be able to understand how to patent a mobile app idea in this manner.

How to Patent an App Idea in Basic Steps

The following are the basic steps to understanding how to patent an app idea.

1. Find and register with a patent attorney.

You should consult and hire a patent lawyer who specialises in software patenting if you want to present a well-crafted top-notch patent and maximise the scopes of your patent application being chosen. He or she must have prior experience in this field.

2. Tell your app idea

Because it is a legal procedure, it may include litigation. So, rather than attempting to do it yourself, hire a professional. It is not advised that you hire the first lawyer you come across. Make a thorough investigation and find the best option that fits your budget.

Just because you have an app idea doesn’t mean you’ve finished your work. You must bring the idea to life in order to prove its utility, and this is one of the requirements for obtaining a patent. Because the court will require proper proof of your invention before issuing a patent against your app, you must ensure that the entire process is documented. You can also test the functionality of your mobile apps by creating a prototype. Because the app procedures and functionalities, not the code, are patented, this will help your lawyer evaluate your app’s flowchart.

3. Conduct a patent search

Even if you studied well, a patent lawyer is recommended to conduct a global search for apps that are similar to yours or have the same flows or functionalities. This way, you can avoid any unexpected breaches from other companies. It is preferable to spend some money and ensure that your patent has the broadest possible scope of approval.

You can also test the functionality of your mobile app by creating a prototype. Because the app procedures and functionalities, not the code, are patented, this will help your lawyer evaluate your app’s flowchart.

3. Conduct a patent search

Even if you studied well, a patent lawyer is recommended to conduct a global search for apps that are similar to yours or have the same flows or functionalities. This way, you can avoid any unexpected breaches from other companies. It is preferable to spend some money and ensure that your patent has the broadest possible scope of approval.

4. Lodge a provisional or non-provisional patent application

non-provisional applications allow you to file without making a claim on an application filed in the convention country or with no app reference in the procedure. It should be accompanied by a comprehensive claim as well as specifics. It must include a written description of the invention as well as a claim that legally defines the invention.

Fill out a patent application, either provisional or non-provisional.

You can file a patent application for your mobile app using both provisional and non-provisional patent applications.

You can file a provisional application without submitting a formal patent claim, declaration, or data disclosure statement. This application type has a few advantages:

  • Allows the term ‘Patent Pending’ to be used in an app.
  • It will take 12 months to create the MVP.
  • It is less expensive to prepare than non-provisional applications.

Non-provisional applications allow you to file without making a claim on an application filed in the convention country or with no app reference in the procedure. It should be accompanied by a comprehensive claim as well as specifics. It must include a written description of the invention as well as a claim that legally defines the invention.

You must consider the following factors when deciding between a provisional and non-provisional application:

How long do you want to put off paying for patent text?

When do you want your patent to be approved?

Non-provisional is the best option for you if your need is related to the second point mentioned above. If you only need the first, a provisional application will suffice.

5. Submit Your Patent Application

This is the last step in the process of patenting a mobile app concept. After successfully completing the aforementioned steps and preparing a patent application, you must file it with the USPTO. You should investigate it, despite the fact that it is a time-consuming procedure that necessitates a lot of paperwork. You may need the following documents during this procedure.

  • Specification
  • Oath or Declaration
  • Disclosure of Information Statement
  • Form for checking the status of an entity
  • Claims
  • Data Sheet for the Application
  • Drawings
  • Treaty on Patent Cooperation (Optional and for International Filings)
  • Sheet of Coverage
  • Fee Schedule

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