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InnovationQ Tips: Viewing and Interpreting the Competitive Landscape

By May 1, 2017August 3rd, 2020No Comments

By: Devin Salmon, Patent Analyst,

When conducting searches in the patent space, one way to use the data gathered is for competitive intelligence. By discovering the competitive landscape, you can better answer questions such as:

  • Who are the major players in the field?
  • What areas should I consider investing in?
  • Should I acquire a license?
  • Are my patents in certain technology spaces more likely to be infringed?

InnovationQ provides several tools to help with competitive analysis, and one of the most versatile is using the concept-based search in combination with the semantic map.

Concept-Based Semantic Searching and Mapping

To discover the competitive landscape around a particular patent or invention, conduct a search querying a specific patent or natural language description of an invention and use the results to map the relevant technology area. The semantic Map shows the prevalent concept terms present in the documents of the result set.

The Map gives you a high-level view of the concepts represented in the space around your query, and groups terms based on how they relate to each other. This provides a way to see potential expansion opportunities into relevant but different industries, as well as potential licensing opportunities around your own patents. Click on the Customize tab at the right to view a list of the top assignees by total count of patents or highest relevance to your query.

This will show you who the major players are in the space and in which areas they are investing. Display each assignee’s patents on the Map in a different, custom color. Use the color wheel next to the document count for each assignee to pick a color for that assignee and highlight the documents on the Map.

You can also use the Map to zoom in on areas of interest and potentially find overlaps between you and your competitors – where a competitor could potentially be infringing on your patents – or gaps that could indicate an area of interest not currently being utilized. Patents which complement each other but are not held by your direct competitors could shed light on licensing opportunities. Look at assignees by count and find smaller companies with patents closely related to yours and consider an acquisition.

Want to learn more strategies about using InnovationQ’s tools to analyze your competitive landscape? Send an email to, and we will be happy to help.