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The number of Korean applications for intellectual property rights during the third quarter of 2010 (News Letter No. 205)



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1. The number of Korean applications for intellectual property rights during the third quarter of 2010

The number of Korean applications for intellectual property rights during the third quarter of this year decreased, compared with the same period, last year. According to the Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO, Commissioner: Soo-won LEE), the number of the applications for intellectual property rights as filed during the third quarter was 84,119, decreasing by 8.9% in comparison with 92,303 during the same period last year.

By rights, the number of utility model applications decreased by 28.3% (from 4,392 during the same period last year, to 3,150), the number of trademark applications decreased by 16.3% (from 32,563 to 27,271), the number of design application decreased by 3.8% (from 14,475 to 13,922), and the number of patent applications decreased by 2.7% (from 40,873 to 39,776).

By subjects conducting research, the number of public companies and the number of the other public institutions increased by 30.1% and 11.0%, respectively, during the same period. However, the number of large companies and the number of small and medium companies decreased by 9.5% and 23.5%, respectively.

The number of requests for examination (34,824) decreased by 8.3%, compared with the number during the same period last year. The number of demands for trials (3,415) also decreased by 11.4%.

However, the number of patent registrations during the third quarter was increased by 14.1% (from 35,905 during the same period as last year to 40,971).

2. Patent consultation from Twitter, without burdens

- KIPO fully operates a patent consultation through Twitter

KIPO announced that they would fully operate consultations regarding intellectual property rights by using Twitter in accordance with the recent mobile environments, such as the spreading of smartphones, and develop applications for consultations with clients.

At present, consultations regarding the intellectual property rights, such as patents/trademarks/designs, are performed through a patent customer center. About 40 expert consultants handle telephone consultations which average more than 3,000 per day.

In addition to the telephone consultations, intellectual property consultations will be enabled, in real-time, through Twitter for intellectual property consultation (@ipconsult). When anyone posts a question on Twitter, a Twitter expert consultant will answer in real-time and provide core intellectual property consultation information.

Until the end of this year, KIPO will develop an application including key questions and answers regarding the procedures of filing a patent application and registering a patent, to be provided free.

3. The Republic of Korea is at a world-class level with respect to patent productivity

- R&D international cooperation is insufficient, compared with advanced countries

The Republic of Korea is at a world-class level with respect to the patent productivity but somewhat insufficient in comparison with advanced countries with respect to the international cooperation in the R&D field.

According to “2010 World Intellectual Property Indicator” recently published by the World Intellectual Property Organization, the Republic of Korea took 1st in world ranking, with the number of patent applications, 102.6, per US$1billion as GDP on the basis of 2008 and with the number of patent applications, 3.3, per US$1million as R&D cost. As for the absolute scale of patent applications, the Republic of Korea has kept its 4th in world ranking, following the US, Japan and China, for four years from 2005.

However, the international R&D cooperative activities, such as international joint research and the like, have been considered as being a little negative. Among the PCT international applications which entered the Korean national phase, the proportion of the applications by foreign researchers is only 5.4% of the total number of the international applications, being at 19th in world ranking.

This means that the patent productivity of the Korean R&D activities is high but the globalization of R&D needs to be improved. Further, these statistics are noteworthy in consideration of the recent trends in the globalization of research environments and the open innovation of maximally using outside human resources and technology.

4. Active filing of patent applications relating to the “haptic technology” opening a digital haptic area

Are you ready for the haptic digital world that you feel through your whole body? As the haptic technology has been developed at a high speed, an era where a human has a conversation with a machine by feel is expected to come before long.

The haptic technology enables a human to feel the haptic information of an object at remote or an object in a computer virtual space.

When the haptic technology is fully popularized, haptic TVs, haptic movies, haptic books and remote feedback will be possible. People can feel vividly the sense of realism in the action scene through a haptic TV. They can feel the sense of touch of luscious silk while watching the home-shopping, to buy new clothes. Further, they make children to feel the sense of touch, such as a hard back shell of a turtle or soft hair of a Persian cat, while reading a haptic book to the children.

According to KIPO, about 15 patent applications relating to the haptic technology were filed per year by 2006. However, the number of the patent applications rapidly increased to 43 in 2007 and 120 in 2008. The number of accumulated patent applications by 2008 was 177. As the IT products with complicated functions have been released, the demand has increased for an intuitively feeling interface that can be easily used. In this regard, it has been increasingly important to secure a patent right of the haptic technology as one of core technologies thereof and the number of the patent applications has rapidly increased.  


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