App DevelopmentInternet and Businesses

How To Patent An App In India?

Are you someone who has an impressive and innovative idea that can be transformed into a mobile application, or have you already done the same? This unique and personal asset of yours can be patented to ensure that others do not use it for harmful purposes or are not claimed as someone else’s. So if you are wondering whether you can patent your mobile application in India, here is your answer. Through this blog, we will go through the steps and processes of patenting an app in India.

How Can I Patent My App?

You can patent app by filing one or more patent applications with the Indian patent office corresponding to your mobile application’s innovative features or characteristics. Also, the Indian Patents Act states that one patent application should only relate to a single invention. 

To patent the innovative aspects of your mobile application, first, you should draft patent claims that cover the app’s corresponding hardware and software features through system/apparatus claims and method/process claims. When applying for patent claims for your mobile app, you must highlight the novel aspects to connect hardware elements, where each of the elements has its purpose and is limited under its functionality as described in method claims. 

Steps To Apply For An App Patent

You can either choose to individually apply for the patent or assign an agent to do the same. However, it is best if you hire an agent for the application process as it requires a lot of data collection and document preparation. Here are the steps for app patent application.

Invention Disclosure

The first step is to disclose your invention to the professional by signing the non-disclosure agreement. In this step, you must ensure to submit every detail about your invention that proves it to be unique and yours.

Patentability Search

In this step, you pay the professional Rs 10,000 to Rs 20,000 to perform extensive research for prior evidence of similar invention in all the possible databases. After conducting the research, they build a patentability report based on your invention. 

Decision To File For A Patent

This step is where the actual process begins. After conducting a detailed research about any existing history of your invention, it is now time to decide if you want to go ahead with filing the patent application. However, for you to go ahead with the patent application, you must have an ‘inventive step’ when compared with existing work. It must be ‘technically advanced’ or ‘economically significant’ or both when compared with other works.

Patent Drafting

You can either choose to draft the application on your own or hire a professional. However, if you choose to assign a professional for the task, you will have to pay around Rs 20,000 to Rs 30,000. Since it is one of the most crucial steps in the entire process and requires both technical and legal understanding, it is recommended that you hire a professional to do the job.

Filing The Application

After completing your patent application and reviewing it, you are ready to apply to the patent office. Applying for a patent can be Rs 1,600, Rs 4,000, or Rs 8,000 (based on the application type ). Also, note that if you do not file for a request for early publication, the patent application will automatically be published on the expiry of 18 months.

Request For Examination

After submitting your application, within 24 hours, you should request the Indian Patent Office to examine your patent application. The examination fee could cost between Rs 4,000 to Rs 20,000 based on the type of applicant.

Responding to Objections

In this step, the officers in the patent office thoroughly examine the draft and report submitted by the applicant. Additionally, the inventor gets the opportunity to communicate his novelty or inventive step over other works found during the assessment. And, if all the things are well clarified and solved, the patent application is almost ready for action. 

Grant Of Patent

The officer places the application for grant if it meets all the prescribed requirements. The final grant is usually notified through a published journal.

Renewal Of Patent

After achieving the patent, it usually stays in force for 20 years. After completing these years, the patent owner should renew the patent by paying a small fee.

Wrapping Up

Although the entire process of filing for a patent is complex and time-consuming, you cannot underestimate its importance and power. In fact, having a patent ensures that no individual claims their right over your invention. Also, you can get legal help in case of any infringements. This allows you to avoid problems that can negatively affect your business growth, more so if you are a mobile app development company.

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