A patent analysis allows you to understand the strengths and weaknesses of a patent more deeply. Reviewing part or all of your patent portfolio may be to address a specific piece of your IP strategy, such as before buying or selling intellectual property, or renewing or pruning a patent. An IP analysis may also be part of a business-wide assessment, such as a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats) analysis. Not only can you analyze patents in your own portfolio, but the patent analysis process also allows you to gain insight into your competitors’ protected technologies or patents held by M&A targets.
Patent Analysis Process
Analyzing a patent allows you to look at it from multiple perspectives, gaining a deeper understanding of its potential. The patent analysis process uncovers multiple insights:
Technological Strength: Highly novel inventions, when combined with excellent patent language, result in technologically superior patents that offer competitive advantages. While novelty should be ensured early in the innovation process, ongoing patent analysis allows you to remain confident in your IP’s potential throughout its life.
Commercial Potential: Not every protected invention is patented for immediate commercial gain. However, a patent may present an opportunity for a product, process, or licensing deal at any point throughout its lifetime. Regularly analyzing intellectual property for commercial potential can highlight new opportunities, as well as identify patents that no longer provide ROI.
Legal Strength: Even if an invention offers your organization commercial potential and a competitive advantage, if the related patent is not valid and enforceable, it offers little legal protection. Understanding the extent of your patents’ enforceability can help you decide whether or not to pursue infringement lawsuits, licensing deals, and other legal actions.
Patent Value: Together, innovation novelty, patent language, potential profit, portfolio strategy, and legal value help an organization predict the value of a patent. These individual elements contribute to a patent’s value, individually and as part of a strategic IP portfolio. A thorough patent analysis offers insight into each of these elements.
Patent Analysis Methods
Reviewing each of these elements for all of your patents manually would be time prohibitive, even for a business with a relatively small IP portfolio. Instead, an objective, AI-backed patent analysis method delivers insights quickly for faster decision making. IP.com’s Patent Vitality Report (PVR) offers five scores: overall strength, litigation risk, monetization potential, new technology value, and patent quality. These objective benchmarks reflect the patent analysis process and offer a comprehensive overview of a patent’s strengths and weaknesses, either alone or as part of a strategic portfolio.