How to Patent a Mobile App Idea?
Are you wondering how to patent an app idea? With the rise of mobile app development and its competitive market, it is becoming increasingly important to protect your app ideas. In order to do so, you need to know how to patent your app idea.
Patenting an app idea is a complex process and involves filing numerous documents, filling out official paperwork, and paying the necessary fees. The process also involves researching to make sure that your app idea is unique and hasn’t already been patented.
In this article, we will explore everything about the patenting process of a mobile app idea, from the steps to follow to the cost and time involved.
What Exactly is a Patent App?
A patent is a legal document that grants an individual or organization exclusive rights to an invention or idea. A patent gives the inventor of an app, product, process, or other creation the right to prevent others from making, using, selling, importing, and distributing their invention without permission for a set period of time. This means that any person who wants to use your patented idea must seek permission from you first before they can do so legally. Patents are granted by national governments and provide protection for both small and large businesses alike.
Having a patent helps protect your idea or product from being stolen by competitors, and it also helps you to reap the rewards of your hard work. It gives you a legal right to take action against anyone who attempts to duplicate your invention without permission.
Why is a Patent Important for Your App?
A patent is an important legal document for any inventor or entrepreneur who wants to protect their idea. It provides them with exclusive rights to their invention or idea, allowing them to prevent others from using, selling, importing, and distributing it without permission.
By obtaining a patent, you can make sure that your hard work and ideas are not stolen by competitors. Furthermore, having a patent gives you the legal right to take action against anyone who attempts to duplicate your invention without permission. A patent protects both small and large businesses alike and helps ensure that inventors reap the rewards of their innovation. Some of the key benefits of having a patent are:
- Exclusive Rights: Your patent provides you with exclusive rights to your invention or idea, allowing you to prevent others from using, marketing, importing, and distributing it without permission.
- A Legal Right to Take Action: Having a patent gives you the legal right to ensure that your ideas or products are safe from competitors. You can take legal action against anyone who attempts to use your invention without permission.
- Financial Rewards: Having a patent can help you to capitalize on your innovation, as it gives you the right to claim royalties or license fees from anyone who wants to use your patented invention.
These are just some of the benefits that you can gain from having a patent. Knowing how to patent an app idea is essential if you want to protect and monetize your innovation.
Types of Patents Available For Your Mobile App Idea
To patent an idea for a mobile app, there are majority two ways to do it — first is the provisional patenting and the second is non-provisional patenting. Let’s understand them in detail:
1. Provisional Patenting:
Provisional patenting is a way to protect your app idea. It means filing papers and paying fees so that no one else can use, market, import, or distribute your idea without your permission. It also means looking up information to make sure someone else has not already patented the same thing.
The provisional patent lasts for one year and allows you to market your idea as “patent pending.” This type of patent is ideal for small businesses or individuals that may not have the resources to immediately pursue a non-provisional patent.
The best part about the provisional patent is that it allows you to test the market and make changes to your app idea before filing a non-provisional patent. You do not need any kind of legal compliance or assistance to file a provisional patent.
Once you’ve done the research and determined that your idea is unique and there are no competitors, you can move forward with the provisional patent.
2. Non-provisional Patent:
Non-provisional patenting is the more common and preferred way to protect your mobile app idea. This type of patent gives you exclusive rights to your invention, allowing you to prevent others from using, selling, importing, and distributing it without permission.
Unlike a provisional patent, a non-provisional patent lasts for 20 years from the filing date. It also requires legal compliance and assistance to file.
The non-provisional patent process typically takes longer than the provisional patent because it involves extensive research, filing documents, and fees, and has several other requirements that must be met before the patent is granted.
It’s important to note that it’s possible for someone else to have the same idea as you. In this case, the first one to file for a patent will have exclusive rights over that invention. The non-provisional patent is ideal for large businesses and/or products that have the potential to generate revenue.
Which Patent is Right for Your Business App?
Whether you should pursue a provisional or non-provisional patent for your mobile app idea depends on several factors.
- If you have limited resources and the potential for revenue is uncertain, then a provisional patent is your best option. It allows you to test the market and make changes before committing to the more expensive non-provisional patent.
- If you have the resources to pursue a non-provisional patent and/or your app has revenue potential, then that option is likely the better choice. It offers more protection and exclusivity than a provisional patent, giving you peace of mind that your invention won’t be stolen or copied without permission.
- Once you decide which type of patent you want to pursue, the next step is to start researching. Make sure your idea is unique and that no one has already patented something similar.
- Once you have confirmed that your invention is unique, it’s time to apply for a patent. This process involves filing documents and paying fees, so make sure you are well-prepared before submitting your application.
- Patenting a mobile app idea is a long and complex process that requires research and commitment. But if you follow the right steps discussed below, it can help protect your invention and give you peace of mind knowing that you are the rightful owner of your app idea.
How to Patent an Idea for an App?
Follow the steps below to patent your mobile app idea:
Step 1. Search and enlist with a legal patent attorney:
The first step in patenting an app idea is to search for and enlist a legal patent attorney. Patent attorneys have experience in filing patents, so they will be able to provide you with the right advice and guidance throughout the process. The legal professional will help you draft and submit the patent application, as well as review any legal issues that may arise during the process.
Don’t rush in hiring the attorney, do your research and hire the one with a good reputation and experience in the field, as it may save you time and money in the long run. Once you have hired your attorney, the next step is to file for a provisional or non-provisional patent.
Step 2. Mobile app invention showcase:
Just having an app idea is half the battle; you also need to showcase it in the right way. Include images, diagrams, and other visuals that demonstrate how your app works. This will help make your invention more understandable for patent offices as well as potential customers or investors.
The patent court needs to see that your invention is unique and that no one has already patented a similar idea. Being able to clearly illustrate your idea will help prove this point. Once the court is satisfied that your invention meets all the criteria, you will be granted the patent.
To improve the odds of getting the patient, consider creating a prototype that can be demonstrated in the patent office. This will give you a concrete example of how your invention works, as opposed to just a set of drawings and diagrams.
Step 3. Do in-depth practice of patent search:
Websites like USPTO.gov and Google Patents allow you to perform patent searches. Use them to ensure that no one has already patented your mobile app idea before you file for a patent. If you find that someone has already patented something similar to yours, then it’s probably best not to proceed with the application.
In addition to patent searches, you should also conduct a thorough search of the App Store and Google Play. If your app idea is already available, then it’s most likely not patentable.
The goal of the patent search is to ensure that no one has already patented your invention before you file your application. If you do find a similar invention, then it’s best to move on and come up with another idea.
Step 4. Go for provisional or non-provisional patent:
Once you have done your research and determined that your invention is unique, then it’s time to file the patent application. Depending on the type of invention, you can either apply for a provisional or non-provisional patent.
A provisional patent gives you one year to refine your invention before you have to file for a full patent. This is a good option if you need more time to develop your invention and make sure it’s market-ready before applying for the full patent.
On the other hand, if you’re confident that your invention is ready for filing, then a non-provisional patent may be the better option. This type of patent will give you full protection for your invention and make it easier to take legal action against anyone who tries to steal or copy your invention.
Once you have filed the application, you will need to wait several months before you receive a response from the patent office. If all goes well, then your invention will be granted a patent and you can start enjoying the benefits.
During the process, your attorney will let you know whether or not your app is patentable. They will also provide advice and guidance on how to optimize your chances of success. Heed their advice and make sure you are thorough in the patent application process to ensure the best possible outcome.
What are the Requirements for Patenting an Idea for an App?
To obtain a patent for an app idea, the following requirements must be met:
- Novelty: The app must be new and non-obvious.
- Utility: The app must have a practical and useful purpose.
- Non-abstract: The app must be a specific and concrete application, not just a theoretical idea.
- Enablement: The app must be described in enough detail so that someone skilled in the field can understand and use it.
- Claims: The patent must include specific claims that define the invention and what is being protected.
Note: Patent requirements may vary by country, and it’s advisable to consult with a patent attorney to ensure that all requirements are met.
What is The Cost to File For a Patent App?
|S. No||Type of Patent||Cost of Patent|
|1||Provisional Patents||Price Range From $100 to $300|
|2||Non-Provisional Patents||Price Range From $1,000 to $3,000|
|3||Attorney Fees||Price Range From $1,500 to $5,000|
The cost to file for a patent will depend on the type of application you are filing. If you are filing a provisional patent, then the cost is relatively low (usually around $100-$300). On the other hand, non-provisional patents can range from $1,000 – $3,000 depending on the complexity of the invention.
These costs do not include attorney fees, which can range from $1,500 – $5,000 or more depending on the complexity of your application.
An experienced patent attorney is key to not only helping you file a successful patent application but also ensuring that your idea remains protected. An attorney can help you navigate the complexities of the patent office and maximize your chances of success.
At the end of the day, it’s important to remember that patenting a mobile app idea is no easy task. It requires research, dedication, and most importantly an understanding of the patent process. With patience and persistence, you can be successful in filing a patent for your invention. Once the patent is approved, go for mobile app development services from professional companies like EZ Rankings to turn your idea into a reality.
Q. How long does it take to get a patent for a mobile app?
Ans. It typically takes 6-9 months from the time you submit your application to the time you receive a response from the patent office.
Q. How much does it cost to file a patent?
Ans. The cost to file a patent will depend on the type of application you are filing. Provisional patents are usually around $100-$300, while non-provisional patents can range from $1,000 – $3,000.
Q. Why should I hire an attorney to help me file a patent?
Ans. An experienced patent attorney can help you overcome the complexities of the patent office and maximize your chances of success.
Q. Is it possible to patent a mobile app idea?
Ans. Yes, it is possible to patent a mobile app idea. However, it’s important to remember that the application process is complex and requires detailed research.
Q. Will the patent office review my application?
Ans. Yes, the patent office will review your application and determine whether or not your invention is eligible for a patent.