Corsearch Launches Industrial Design Search

  • Trademark Clearance
Corsearch Launches Industrial Design Search

Introducing Industrial Design Search, the new AI-powered image search tool within TrademarkNow that enables IP professionals to swiftly search potential designs for registration.

Industrial designs — also known variously as designs, community designs, and design patents — are a scope of protection that is applied to the ornamental features or appearance of a product. As trademark congestion means that the availability of word marks is increasingly challenging, industrial designs are coming to the fore in the ever-evolving search for ways to protect a company’s goods and services.

What is the difference between industrial designs and patents?

Industrial designs differ from patents (or utility patents) in that they don’t protect the design of the product itself or any of the features of the product that contribute to its use or functionality. Additionally, industrial design protection doesn’t cover a design that can be applied to a variety of articles or products, such as a logo or other design created to be an identifier for the company that produces the goods. Rather, it must be inseparable from the particular product to which it has been applied.

Why is it important to register your industrial designs? 

Like other intellectual property protections, the design applying for protection must be ‘novel’ or ‘new,’ differ substantially from existing designs, and not be dictated by technical function. In many regions, it is possible to obtain some limited protections for unregistered designs also, but these are more difficult to enforce and have a much shorter time frame than registered designs (3 years for unregistered versus 25 years in the European Union). In other cases, where the design can be considered a work of art in its own right or applied art, copyright protections may be afforded.

Ultimately, registering your industrial design affords much greater protection and more ease in enforcement, ensuring that the owner is empowered to leverage their investment commercially to the fullest extent possible. But of course, this requires registrability – which means clearance or searching existing industrial design registrations to ensure that yours is sufficiently ‘novel’ and distinctive.

Using AI-powered technology to swiftly search potential designs for registration

Because industrial designs are limited to ornamental characteristics that are either embodied within or applied to a product, visual searching is required to clear a potential design for registration. This can be a long and inefficient process due to the need for manual construction of queries and the consequent production of large volumes of results, which must also be manually reviewed.

TrademarkNow’s AI image recognition engine is recognized as the longstanding industry leader. Now, Corsearch customers can apply the speed and accuracy of tools like LogoCheck to industrial designs. Based on sophisticated similarity algorithms, Industrial Design Search will identify the closest matches to your target image within seconds.

They can also avail of the user-friendly UI long associated with TrademarkNow. Trademark professionals can easily view matching results in tiles, access more information on pertinent results, add them to their reports, and download chosen results to a configurable Excel report.

Talk to an expert

Corsearch has a strong focus on industry expertise and innovation in supporting trademark professionals to keep pace in a fast-moving world. Click below to speak with an expert on how we can help you to do more with less!