Inclusivity, accessibility and the UPC CMS platform
Much has been written recently about the case management system for the Unified Patent Court, both on this blog and elsewhere (Kluwer blog). However, as well as issues with identifying eIDAS providers who can meet the requirements of the UPC’s strong authentication system and also provide remote identification services, IPcopy notes that the “remote ID” solutions being offered involve requirements that potentially make them inaccessible or unusable for some people.
Having recently gone through the remote ID process with one of these providers, this blog notes that, while it may be relatively painless for most users, it may be unusable for some disabled people. The fallback identification options for the provider we used require either a face-to-face visit to their premises or the services of a notary. Such fallback options will add a layer of complexity and cost.(more…)
UPC Case Management System – not ready for primetime?
The UPC Preparatory Committee has announced a potential start date of 1 April 2023 for the unitary patent system with the sunrise period scheduled to start on 1 January 2023.
A key part of the UPC will be a fully functional case management system but there are unfortunately many unanswered questions regarding this IT platform with many patent attorneys in the dark about how to efficiently lodge bulk opt out requests and, with less than three months to go before the sunrise period is scheduled to start, a need to get to grips with the recently announced strong authentication system requirements. (more…)
FitTech IP disputes to run and run?
As the world starts to emerge from the worst of the pandemic, fitness companies, which had driven advances in the home fitness industry as gyms were closed, are now turning to the legal system to protect their own products from competition while expanding into new lines of business.
In the most recent turn of events, Nike is suing Lululemon for patent infringement over Lululemon’s at-home Mirror fitness device and related mobile applications, alleging that Lululemon is infringing IP that they have been developing since 1983. This lawsuit follows Lululemon’s acquisition of Mirror, who previously produced the smart device and apps, for $500 million (£368 million) in 2020. A spokesperson for Lululemon has said that they are ‘confident in [defending their position] in , as the claims in Nike’s patents were “overly broad and invalid”.
With the home fitness industry thriving, new brands are coming head-to-head with market dominating giants. As the digital age accelerates innovation in the sporting world, organising and protecting your IP is important now more than ever, and it could save you a lot of time and money in the long run. (more…)
Artificial intelligence and patents: Government response to call for views
Artificial Intelligence (AI) continues to play an increasing role in technological development. There are many questions relating to intellectual property (IP) that arise from AI-related innovation. The UK government has indicated that it wants the UK to be at the forefront of the AI revolution, and wants to create the best environment to allow AI innovation to thrive.
Last year, the UK government published a call for views on various topics related to AI and IP. The government has now published its response, and below we summarise the response on the patent-related topics included in the call for views. (more…)
e-EQE – “room for improvement”
So, the EQEs are over for another year. We wrote about the technical issues experienced in Paper D last week. This post aims to look over the examination as a whole and highlight areas where there’s room to improve.
The points below will, IPcopy understands, chime with many candidates, though perhaps not the EPO Press Release team who put out this glowing tribute to “going digital”. If anyone is looking for a Reality Distortion Field Generator that goes up to 11 then at least we know where there’s one we might be able to borrow….
Nearly 4000 candidates and 24 hours of exams over 5 days is a large project to deliver and the EPO should be congratulated in getting the exams off the ground this year. IPcopy wonders however if a perception that the online version might lead to cheating in turn resulted in some of the sub-optimal outcomes noted below. (more…)
e-EQE – Sprechen Sie Deutsch?
Technology has been a force for good/amazing things – getting man to the Moon, speedy vaccine development, the Internet1 – but has had some missteps along the way – Zoom cat filters, the Internet2 and now the EQE online exam platform….
As an outside observer, the WISEflow system/LockDown browser seemed a somewhat over-engineered and complicated solution to try and implement for the exams this year. Any system that has had people seriously contemplating removing keys from their keyboards to avoid getting kicked out of the system for using a banned keyboard shortcut combination is, in this blog’s view, not quite ready for Primetime. (more…)
A difference of dosage – the European approach to patenting new dosage regimes
Few will have missed recent reports giving interim data on the efficacy of recently developed vaccines aiming to prevent SARS-CoV-2, the virus behind the Covid-19 pandemic.
At time of writing, the University of Oxford, in collaboration with AstraZeneca plc, have announced data from Phase III trials showing that their candidate vaccine can indeed effectively prevent the disease, including an observed reduction in asymptomatic infections.
There are many reasons to be excited about these findings. The speed of development and testing is unprecedented. A large number of doses are already manufactured, with many more on their way. Then there is the fact that the temperature stability and low cost of this particular vaccine (in comparison to others under development) could mean that it can be rolled out to the developing world more effectively, and so possibly mark the beginning of the end for the devastating pandemic worldwide.
Of course, just as importantly, it provides an opportunity to consider the patentability of medical inventions relating to different dosage regimes at the European Patent Office (EPO). (more…)
Changes to UK Address for Service Rules
The UK Government has announced that from 1 January 2021, the UKIPO’s rules on address for service will change. The change removes the ability to use an address for service in the European Economic Area (EEA) for new UK matters and will mean that only a UK, Gibraltar or Channel Islands address will be accepted on new applications, new oppositions, and other proceedings before the UKIPO. The Isle of Man remains a valid address for service. (more…)
Pandemics, Tsunamis and Space Travel – The Surprising Catalysts of Innovation
As a trainee patent attorney, I have been curious about the inventions that may arise as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. There have already been advances in healthcare directly related to the medical emergency, such as improved ventilators and face masks, and there will hopefully be a novel vaccine to end the calamity. However, with the majority of the population having spent the last few months stuck at home under UK lockdown, with little capacity to socialise and an uncertain future ahead, it would come as no surprise if some people have used the time to innovate.
Of course, the current pandemic is certainly not the first time that inventions have emerged from significant events in history. (more…)