Have you recently created a smartphone app and seek to protect your rights to commercially exploit it in the current market? Patenting your app, like any other invention, may be your next big move – But can you patent an app?

Applying for a patent for a smartphone app is a difficult and important process, LawPath recommends seeking advise from a patent attorney.

Can You Patent an App?

The simple answer is – yes!
Similarly to any other invention, a patent application may be filed and successfully granted for a smartphone app.

If you’re seeking information regarding what is a patent, why you should patent and the types of patents available, check out our article check out our article What is a Patent?.

How to File a Patent?

A patent application is filed with IP Australia. Prior to filing the patent, the patent database must be searched to ensure a patents for similar inventions do not exist. You must then chose from the types of applications which vary in length and requirements. The application is filed with IP Australia who assess the application based on the eligibility criteria set out in section 18 of the Patents act 1900. For more information regarding filing a patent, check out our article How to File a Patent?’.

Should I Patent an App?

Just like any other invention, the success of a patent application depends on the extent to which your app satisfies the criteria set out in the Patents Act 1990 – namely, the ‘novel’ and ‘innovative’ requirements. Your app must not be abstract or broad in its functionality hence ought to be unique in the service it intends to provide consumers. With over 2.8 million apps in the Android store and 2.2 million in the Apple store, the difficulty of satisfying the novelty requirement is heightened over time.

For assistance regarding whether you should patent an app and how to go about it, LawPath recommends seeking advise from a patent attorney .

Don’t know where to start? Contact a LawPath consultant on 1800 529 728 to learn more about customising legal documents, obtaining a fixed-fee quote from our network of 750+ expert lawyers or to get answers to your legal questions.

Zachary Swan

Zac is currently Head of Content at LawPath, Australia’s largest and fastest growing online legal platform. Since joining LawPath, Zac has assisted 1000s of startups and small business’ with their legal needs.