1. Korea-China-Japan agreed to publish results of comparative studies of the patent examination and trial systems among the three countries
The 14th Commissioners’ meeting of the Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO), the State Intellectual Property Office (SIPO) of the People’s Republic of China and the Japanese Patent Office (JPO) was held in Seoul Partners House on November 10, 2014. In this meeting, they agreed to further strengthen the cooperation among KIPO, SIPO and JPO of the three countries by exchanging their respective relevant statistical data to improve the quality of the Patent Prosecution Highway and by resetting the common website (TRIPO.org) of KIPO, SIPO and JPO currently provided in English into three languages, Korean, Chinese and Japanese, to enhance the convenience of visitors (applicants) publicly.
The Commissioners of KIPO, SIPO and JPO agreed to review and approve the results of comparative studies of the examination and trial systems and work among the three countries which have been progressed by expert groups and also agreed to publish the results to the people.
The results of the comparative studies are expected to help applicants in understanding the examination and trial systems and work of these three countries, to be a base where Korean applicants may faster and more conveniently secure intellectual property rights in China and Japan.
2. Use of patent information is simplified
- Patent information has started a service of a next generation data sharing
technology, Linked Open Data (LOD)
KIPO announced to start the patent LOD service which applies the LOD technology, the next generation data sharing technology, on November 27.
This patent LOD service includes the following five kinds: Intellectual property information of patent, design, etc., trial information, administration information, classification code information, and thesaurus.
In the existing information system, since the information search is based on the keyword search, unnecessary information in addition to necessary information is searched and thus a user has the inconvenience of sorting out the information again. However, if LOD is built, more accurate and refined information can be transferred to a user by analyzing the link information of data.
If a user is mapping the applicant information of the patent LOD and the researcher information of the academic information LOD of the Korea Institute of Science & Technology Information (KISTI), a search is available by expanding to research field information and thesis information of an applicant.
3. The number of patent applications related to a micro energy harvesting technology with a wearable technology has rapidly increased
According to KIPO, the number of patent applications related to micro energy harvesting technology grew more than six times during the last seven years, from 27 in 2007 to 167 in 2013.
The reason why the number of the patent applications for micro energy harvesting technology is that a demand for a technology capable of continuously supplying even small power, without charging, as electronic devices have been mobile, microminiaturized and low-power. Since the power obtained by micro energy harvesting technology is too small to operate an electronic device, it has been used only for some sensors such as a touch pad, etc.
The patent applications related to the micro energy harvesting technology are divided into a generating element and a generator using the generating element. Among the total of 765 patent applications, 463 are related to the generating element and 302 are related to the generator.
The development of generating elements was dominated up to 2011 but then the number of the patent applications for the generator has greatly increased from 2012, passing the number of the patent applications for generating elements. This is interpreted as the technology has matured to the level of applying the generating elements to diverse generators.
4. Smart Grid needs to be armed with an international standard patent
In the smart grid industry, multinational companies have done their best in securing standard patents and a standard patent is on the rise as an important means to preoccupy the market.
According to KIPO, among 100 smart grid-related standard patents declared before the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and International Electro-technical Commission (IEC), a large part (44 applications) is related to the fieldbus standards, which are communication protocols to support diverse data generated in factory and building automation equipment and control information of electrical power controllers so as to be exchanged in real time. Following this, 19 are related to the automation and duplication standards of a substation to change alternating current power into proper voltage to supply power and 15 are related to the home automation protocols to support the realization of a smart home. The reason why there are many standard patents in the fieldbus, substation automation and home automation fields is that electric power can be efficiently supplied if the interoperability between the power facility system and the communication system is secured.
A spokesperson of KIPO said, “In order for a Korean company to take the initiative in a severe standard patent battle, it is necessary to secure international standard patents using the information and communication technology where we have strength….To secure standard patents, companies, universities and institutes should carry forward research and development, setting a goal of the creation of standard patents from an early stage of the research and development.”