Patent Insight of China’s Future Car Makers

The future car is the hottest topic in the automotive market in recent years, which can be roughly divided into four technical fields: Connected Car, Autonomous Car, Sharing Car, and Electric Car, in sum, CASE[1] technology.  To understand the world's future car development, we cannot ignore China, which has the largest automobile production. Figure 1. Investment relationship of the Chinese automotive industry As shown in the investment relationship of the Chinese automotive industry in Figure 1, it includes investments, joint ventures, and cooperation between China's large traditional automakers (yellow blocks), large technology companies (purple blocks), and China's new automakers (green...

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Alvyn Lin

CATL and CALB Competing in the Power Battery Market – Patent Offenses and Defense War Tend to Be Harsh

As a critical component of electric vehicles, batteries not only affect the endurance and performance of electric vehicles: they are also a key aspect of electric vehicles’ possible popularity in the future. With the rise of the electric vehicle industry, the global power battery field is also gradually moving towards a more mature stage where a hundred schools of thought compete in a rather fierce manner. Both Contemporary Amperex Technology Co. Limited (CATL) and China Aviation Lithium Electricity Technology Co., Ltd. (formerly known as China Aviation Lithium Battery Co., Ltd., or CALB) are China-based power battery manufacturers. Their batteries are...


Kimberly Uy

A look at the EPO and CNIPA pilot project

As the joint pilot project between the European Patent Office (EPO) and the China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) is due to commence on December 1st, 2020, we took a look at the various benefits and drawbacks that this program may bring to the table.   Patent applications originating in China accounted for 5% of European applications in 2018. The number of Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) applications originating in China was seen to grow further in the following years.   The agreement is a development in a strategic partnership between the EPO and CNIPA that began in 2017. The EPO-CNIPA...


Lucille Chang

U.S.-China trade war- WeChat ban is blocked by U.S. district court with an injunction.

On August 6, 2020, United States President, Donald Trump, signed two executive orders prohibiting individuals and entities within the US from conducting any transactions with Chinese companies, ByteDance (the parent company of TikTok) and Tencent (the parent company of WeChat), which were due to be implemented on September 20, 2020.   In a statement issued by the US Department of Commerce, it claims: “While the threats posed by WeChat and TikTok are not identical, they are similar. Each collects vast data from users, including network activity, location data, and browsing and search histories. Each is an active participant in China’s...


Steven Chang

Is TWS the next driving force for the consumer electronics market? Let’s see what Apple’s earbud patents tell us

Since the debut of Apple’s Airpods in 2016, it’s hard not to notice increasing numbers of people enjoying music and videos with a pair of small, white, streamlined earbuds in their ears. As reported this September by DigiTimes, the PCB and IC substrate suppliers have seen a significant rise in the shipment of True Wireless Stereo (TWS) gadgets in the second half of 2020. We didn’t need to wait until the end of 2020 to see that happen, as Apple’s financial statement — published in 2019 — shed some light on what was to come. Apple’s 2019 10-K report stated...


Patrick Liu

Vehicle-to-Everything, how about Cybersecurity?

Researchers at the University of North Texas announced[1] this year on September 24, that they plan to use the 1 million USD, provided by the National Science Foundation, to establish the first framework in the United States that allows self-driving cars to share data with each other.  Standardizing the data between self-driving cars is an important infrastructure for achieving “cooperative perception” of the vehicles.   Different brands of self-driving cars use different sensors and software, making it difficult for data sharing between the cars. The Vehicle-to-Everything’s (V2X) purpose is to solve this problem through cloud services using the above framework, so...


Daniel Ko

Patent Application Drawings

I always ask the patent application drafters, “what’s the most important part or section of a patent application?” Some will answer “the claims, of course.” Others may say, “it’s the detailed description.” A few will say, “both.” But I will tell them, “drawings are the most important part of a patent application.”   During a patent application drafting, one would usually start with the claims, then the detailed description, and finally, the drawings. But I suggest the other way around. That is, the drawings first, then the detailed description, and then the claims at the end. Many believe that the...


Kimberly Uy

The Debate on AI Qualifications for Inventorship

The USPTO recently rejected two patent applications filed, which named an AI “creativity engine” called DABUS as the inventor. Similar patent applications filed under British, German, and European Union patent regulators have also been rejected. Other applications naming DABUS as the inventor filed in China, Japan, India, and several other countries are still awaiting decisions. Now, the creator of DABUS, Stephen Thaler, has filed a lawsuit against the USPTO, claiming that an AI system is capable of generating original inventions.   While the USPTO asserts that “conception—the touchstone of inventorship—must be performed by a natural person,” Thaler argues that the...


Eugene Lu

Medtronic’s Strategic Investments in Diabetes Business: A More Precise and Patient-Centric Diabetes Care Solution Could Be Expected From the Three Recent Acquisitions.

In 2001, Medtronic strategically acquired Minimed and Medical Research Group to enter the battlefield of diabetes care management. During the last two years, mergers and acquisitions have also expanded its diabetes market.   In 2018, Medtronic acquired Nutrino, a start-up company. It was aiming for Nutrino’s food database and the algorithm for predicting blood glucose after meals. Medtronic will integrate related technologies into its own diabetes products to help diabetes management. In 2019, Medtronic acquired Klue, a start-up company. Klue uses gesture sensing technology to monitor and record users’ eating behavior and give advice on eating behaviors/habits. Recently, Medtronic announced that it...

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