Patent Strategy and Layout Instrument--Derivative Design Patents

Rain Chen, Hsin-Yu Chang


As product technology matures, consumers will shift the focus onto the appearance and design of products. In recent years, the fierce competition between Apple and Samsung in the consumer electronics market has pushed the design patent domain into the spotlight. In Taiwan, the amendment of Taiwan Patent Act in 2011 has the Associated Design Patent (ADP) system replaced by the Derivative Design Patent (DDP) system. This is definitely a major patent reform. The DDP system is similar to the continuation application system of the US. In this study, a total of 40 Patent Professionals (PP) and Design Professionals (DP) participated in the study. The investigators also constructed a substantive DDP scope. The study results are presented below. The DDP system provides designers with a broader scope of patent rights, and this positive result would encourage companies to value design patent layouts. Overall, the DDP system provides more comprehensive design protection compared to the previous one, which is beneficial for Taiwan’s heading into the creative sectors. For patent strategy per se, the DDP system makes design patent rights more solidly rooted. Companies in the future should make a good use of DDP for patent layouts. By doing so, the original design patents can be well protected from imitation or plagiarism. For design strategies, greater differences between DDPs would maximize the created patent scope. The conclusion here can be used as a new instrument by industries in planning their patent layouts.

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Journal of Management and Strategy
ISSN 1923-3965 (Print)   ISSN 1923-3973 (Online)


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