Role Of Freedom To Operate Search Patent In The Competitive Intelligence

Role Of Freedom To Operate Search Patent In The Competitive Intelligence

Written by Deepak Bhagat, In Business, Published On
December 18, 2020
Last modified on December 14th, 2021

In the era of the growing and advanced technologies, discoveries, and patent inventions across the numerous industry segments, Freedom to operate or FTO search patent analysis plays a vital role in deciding the route for releasing the products in the market for the non-inventor companies. In these globalization days, there is not only the necessity of analysis and search in the Home County but also operation in the countries. There are huge investments involved in the product development process. In place of doing an FTO analysis and research after the product development, we always recommend the investors understanding the possible technological areas or product development.

This process eliminates the chances of heavy investments in Research and Development going to waste. Digitization of the registration of the patents has made this possible to implement the patent application data for the possible analysis of the infringement. You can examine the data of the application of the patent in different English speaking nations through a single lay patent firm, without approaching law firms of numerous countries. In the countries where translation issues are involved, then you can always take the assistance of the local law firms.

What Is FTO search?

FTO search is known as an approach that entangles the freedom or clearance search in the legal jurisdiction segment. The inventor can use this to examine or study the legal intellectual properties and protection of the new patent invention in any specific country. It offers an exact amount of information about the various infringement chances in the connected nation where the organization or company is launching their technologies or products.

Industries Where FTO Search Plays A Vital Role

Freedom To Operate Search or FTO search plays a vital role in some of the major industrial segments like Energy, Electronics, Pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and mechanical. There are some persistent sectors for technological developments. In the electronic sectors, it is the technological growth in the areas like mobile communications and consumer durables like computers, television, ACs, music players, and many more that has already experienced the patent of the invention. These technological sectors require executing FTO research to avoid possible infringements. Not only this, but it is always better to be on the safe side by applying for a patent, explaining how your discovery is unique compared to the current technologies for no chances of future conflict.

Solar, Nuclear, and Wind energy are some of the technological developments where there is plenty of scope for patenting any discovery in the Energy and power industry. Fuel cars, electric trains, electric cars, planes, and hybrid cars are difficult developmental areas in the manufacturing segment. Hence if you are a company or an organization releasing your product or technology in these segments, patent validity analysis becomes one of the significant steps in the product launch process for avoiding huge damages for launching the product in the market.

In the Bioscience and pharmaceutical industries, the investments in Research and Development always flow in the direction of drug invention for cardiovascular diseases, HIV, cancer, diabetes, and Arthritis. Hence all the organizations or companies require keeping a careful eye by not infringing the existing patents in the sturdy technological development areas. It is also necessary to keep in mind that in all the other technological segments where there are mild developments, the inventions are not free for launch in the market.

Role Of FTO In The Competitive Intelligence

Now let us take a quick look at the role of the FTO in competitive intelligence. They are as follows.

The FTO research offers all the related information about the patent lifetime that is 14 years for the design patent and 20 years for the utility patent in the USPTO. You can also claim the components of any contending company or organization. For example, maintenance fee details of the payment, priority date, infringements of any other third party person or country patent territory region, rules of jurisdiction, claims, and many more.

Sometimes the contending companies or the organizations sign a cross-licensing non-exclusive agreement. According to it, every company which has a sign in the agreement will include some authority or scope in the data of the intellectual property of other signed company agreements. This agreement comes with more development and research in the interdisciplinary fields of the adjacent organizations. You can sort out patent litigation, other legal problems, and due diligence due to the mutual apprehension of these organizations or companies.

FTO search will be easy for every company, which includes membership of the cross-license non-exclusive agreement. It also reduces the infringement threats as the competitive intelligence will be increasingly productive as the failure chances of plans or ideas decreases. Some of the best benefits of this type of non-exclusive agreements include:

More consummated cost for the FTO search.

  • Offering more information for mining of data.
  • Assumption pledging or future planning together with competitive intelligence.
  • The more economic growth of the business due to restricted litigation or infringement.


Freedom to operate search also assists in the white space analysis patent for discovering more vital information during competitive intelligence. It is one of the easiest ways with global competitor activities related to the advancements of intellectual properties. In other words, Free to Operate research supplies vital information about the development and manufacturing programs of the competitor organizations and companies throughout the world. It also enhances the success rate of new technological strategies. That is why patent mapping has also become an integral part of the management of IP and FTO search analysis. It will never disclose any valuable data in the patents and yet will offer useful indicators to the inventor if anything or any component is similar to their discoveries.

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