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How to improve chances of getting a patent

Venkatesh Prasad, an engineer from Bengaluru, holds more than 100 patents globally. Novelty, research, a detailed description and finding a competent agency are key, he share
Last Updated : 21 April 2023, 06:24 IST
Last Updated : 21 April 2023, 06:24 IST
Last Updated : 21 April 2023, 06:24 IST
Last Updated : 21 April 2023, 06:24 IST

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Getting a patent is a long drawn-out procedure. It can take anywhere between six months and two years. Ahead of World Intellectual Property Day (April 26), Venkatesh Prasad, who holds over 100 patents globally, gives us insight into the process.

Having a great idea is not enough, Prasad, who works as a head of product design and manufacturing at a prominent IT firm, begins.

“First ask yourself if your design is feasible, if it is inventive and novel, and if it is has utility. Then, one has to do thorough research and find out if there are similar products in the market. If yes, then think about what you can do differently, what you can tweak to make your design unique,” explains the Subramanya Nagar resident.

“It’s quite challenging when there are, say, 300 competitors in the market. So research has to be thorough. There is no shortcut. Once you have done your due diligence, you submit your product to a patenting agency,” shares Prasad.

The application requires reams of paperwork and is a complex process, so while one can apply on ipindia.gov.in, it is easier to go through an agency.

The description of one’s product has to be simple, clear and easy to understand, highlighting the patentable features. “The agencies also have access to a vast repository of information so they will have questions,” he says. The agency will then make a draft and send it to the inventors to review it. After changes, edits and finalising the application, it will be filed online on the government’s website. “Typically, they will counter your claim, they may suggest changes, they may deny it, or they will grant it. This is called a ‘direct grant’,” explains Prasad.

In most cases, a grant is given once all the questions and objections are addressed. The new invention is then published in a journal.

Prasad warns against early-stage patenting. “First finalise the products, see if it is manufacturable before applying for a patent,” he says. The process can cost any amount from Rs 15,000 to 50,000 including agency and government fees.

His innovations

Venkatesh Prasad
Venkatesh Prasad

One of his most unique patented inventions was in the first year of Covid. “I was responsible for cleaning the dishes at home. As dishwashers are not always suitable for Indian households, I came up with a way to reduce the time and effort involved,” he recalls. He created a glove with internal tubes connected to a bucket, pump and motor. Three of the fingers were attached with scrubbers, the little finger was fitted with a soap dispenser, and the thumb with a water dispenser. It is called ‘Glove for automated cleaning.’

“It is sustainable as it uses less water and the time taken to clean dishes is almost down by half,” reveals Prasad, who designed the product with help from some of his colleagues.

Four of his designs have gone into production. Mainly created to improve efficiency at the workplace, his automation products fall under the fourth generation of robotics and employ driverless technology. The robots use AI to learn the map of the environment, making them ideal for moving raw material or finished products.

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Published 20 April 2023, 19:29 IST

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