Professor Blind and IPlytics CEO Tim Pohlmann were invited speakers at the first EU Conference On Standards: Your Innovation Bridge hosted and organized by CEN/CENELEC in Brussels. The goal of the conference was bringing together experts from industry, research and policy organizations to explore and discuss the role of standards and patents in research and innovation. Several speakers presented their experiences in linking the patent and standard world to show how each one is benefiting from the other. Professor Blind Chairman of CEN-CENELEC STAIR, moderated Breakout Session 4 Horizon2020 and discussed how standards and innovation relate in the closing expert panel. The discussions revealed that standards and patents are two different tools with different goals and strengths. Knowing when to use which is key in understanding how to monetise research and development expenditures. In this regard IPlytics CEO Tim Pohlmann held a presentation on the topic: “Understanding the Interplay of Patents & Standards to Leverage Market Potential“.
In the follow-up panel discussion Ged Owens from the European Patent Office and Laurent Tonnelier from mobilead discussed with Tim Pohlmann the future perspectives on the interplay of IPR and standards. Pohlmann’s presentation revealed that patents and standards more and more overlap. In this regard the number of standard essential patents has not only been increasing, but develops to be relevant for sectors beyond information and communication technologies (ICT). In view of the industry 4.0 (Internet of Things), companies are more and more challenged by critical technology investment decisions that concern standards and patents at the same time. In order to make the right technology investment decisions, an innovative company needs to identify which technologies will be relevant in the future, which technologies are protected by intellectual property rights and which standards or specifications are to be adopted. In this regard Laurent Tonnelier stated that “standard setting initiatives are mirrors of how technology will look like in the future. Very often companies participate in standard setting projects that are unrelated from their todays core businesses. This interest in developing a standard reflects a company’s interest in future technologies and related product markets.” Ged Owens further noted that “patenting and standardization are both tools to foster innovation”.
IPlytics is a Berlin based company that offers an online based patent analytics platform tool to analyze market developments, technology trends and a company’s competitive position for patenting and standardization. IPlytics Platform integrates patent analysis, patent valuations, patent mapping, patent landscaping and a mapping of technology standards and products, such as an identification of standard essential patents, patent licensing terms or patent pools. IPlytics Platform helps companies making the right R&D investment decisions by providing actionable and trustworthy insights on relevant IP assets.
Just today, the Licensing Executives Society International (LES International) announced to publish Knut Blind’s and Tim Pohlmann’s article on trends for standard essential patents as the article of the month. LESI is a not for profit and non-political umbrella organization having 32 national and regional member societies, interested in technology transfers or licensing of intellectual property rights. LESI publishes a quarterly journal called les Nouvelles. The journal is designed to advance the knowledge of the LESI members and others in improving their skills, techniques and knowledge in licensing and protecting Intellectual Property.
Blind and Pohlmann have been asked to write an article about new trends in the area of patents that read on technological standards. In this regard Blind and Pohlmann have founded the company IPlytics that builds up data on over 80 million patents, over 300,000 patent declarations, over 1,5 million standard documents and about 900 standards organizations. IPlytics offers an online based patent analytics platform tool to analyze market developments, technology trends and a company’s competitive position for patenting and standardization. IPlytics Platform integrates patent analysis, patent valuations, patent mapping, patent landscaping and a mapping of technology standards and products, such as an identification of standard essential patents, patent licensing terms or patent pools. IPlytics Platform helps companies making the right R&D investment decisions by providing actionable and trustworthy insights on relevant IP assets.
Dr. Tim Pohlmann is currently busy trying to transfer the subject of his doctoral thesis into the business model of his startup IPlytics. The idea is to develop a market intelligence tool that analyzes market developments, technology trends and patenting on a single, unified platform called OpenPSP. The awarding of IPlytics for this year’s ICT-innovation prize shows that this business idea has a lot of potential. Tim Pohlmann together with his team received the award today at the International Consumer Electronics Fair (IFA) in Berlin. With the ” ICT Innovation Prize” the BMWi awards the best business plans out of more than 300 applications. The Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology (BMWi) supports startups that have innovative ideas for information and communications technologies (ICT).
Berlin Startup IPlytics increases transparency in the patent thicket!
In recent years, numerous patent disputes have caused damages and menace to many industries. Only this year Apple had to temporarily stop the selling of its iPhones and iPads in Germany over the patent dispute with Motorola. Just a few month ago, the Samsung Galaxy Tab was banned to be commercialized in the whole European market on the basis of patent infringement.
When companies fight for patent infringement quite often hundreds of million Dollars are at stake. However, not all companies have the means to fight in court. Many innovative firms thus state that there is a need for transparency in the dense thicket of patents to prevent patent disputes beforehand.
The Berlin-based startup IPlytics has taken on the task to shed light on the patent thicket. Several years of research at Professor Knut Blind’s Chair of Innovation Economics have brought up new methods for measuring and understanding patent activities in the ICT sector. IPlytics’ market analysis combines economic methods with IT-driven algorithms to process new information on R&D activity, technology trends and market developments. The main product and service of Iplytics is the online platform OpenPSP (Open Platform Patents and standards ). OpenPSP is an online platform that collects and connects current data on patents, products and technology standards with the help of web robots. OpenPSP makes use of data sources that are often freely available in the Internet, but distributed all over the web and difficult to access. With the help of data processing technologies OpenPSP provides its users structured up-to-date information on one single unified platform. The data linking is based on new methods of economic correlation, regression and indicator analysis and combines them with text mining algorithms. OpenPSP is thus the first solution that is able to connect patent data with technical standards, as well as with market-specific information.
In recent years, especially Germany has developed to be an arena of patent litigation. The German patent system is seen as patent holder friendly with a high likelihood of patent enforcement. However, the innovative SME sector feels threatened by the increasing number of patent litigation. Quite frequently, so called patent trolls buy up German patent portfolios to sue for patent infringement in entire industries. Nevertheless, the infringement of patents in the IT industry is in many cases unintentional. The scope of patents is often very wide and patent infringement is difficult to detect in the dense thicket of patent claims. Though, once a company has established its product on the market it is often too late to late to row back. Companies should therefore conduct precautionary measures in advance.
Intelligent patent software solutions save lengthy searches and help innovative companies to hedge early. IPlytics provides a new service to support a company’s innovation and technology management. OpenPSP increases transparency on market developments and on the existence of patents, standards and technologies. Foresight screenings of patenting and standard setting help companies to identify possible licensing cost or legal problems in early periods. The risk potential for the launch of new technologies or products can thus be quantified and valued in early stages.