Free Patent Search Tools - You Get What You Pay For

A recent article on patents owned by the NSA focused on an unusual patent - what is the NSA doing inventing expandable car seats?

Unfortunately, the search was done using the free US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) patent search tool, which doesn't show updated or current ownership - and this patent's ownership (in a separate database) had been corrected long ago to reflect the original inventor, Chrysler Corp.

However, the USPTO patent record doesn't get updated with this kind of change. In addition to missing current owner data, free patent search tools are missing some pretty important other data in the patent records:

  • Expiration dates: these must be calculated by considering extensions and terminal disclaimers, among other complex exceptions.
  • Correct company names: Much of the USPTO data is manually entered, so the data has about 800 different ways to spell IBM, for example. Good luck finding them all with keyword search against inaccurate and uncorrected source patent data.
  • Parent companies: IBM also has 287 subsidiaries that have owned patents - and free databases (and many paid services) don't automatically roll them up for you
  • "Unassigned" owners: Many applications don't indicate the company name of who filed the patent, and Innography is unique in filling in this data where possible by comparing the inventors and addresses to other patents.

To address this missing and inaccurate data, Innography has over 9 million data correction and data filling rules, and more are being added every day by our machine learning and data scientists. Plus, Innography automatically correlates the patent data with other information such as litigation data, financial data, trademarks, etc.

Where can you get access to this corrected and augmented data set for patent searches? PatentScout™ provides "patent search for all", with unlimited usage and users for a flat fee for our clients.

Plus, PatentScout™ includes true semantic search, which is critical for patent searching, where different terminologies are used for the same technology and would be missed with keyword search. And your searches are private - your search strings are not recorded or stored by Innography, ever.

Because of all these data fixes, data completeness, search privacy, and easy-to-use powerful semantic search, PatentScout™ should be every company's and university's preferred patent search tool for researchers and engineers.

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