1. KIPO sets out to build an international cooperative investigation system relating to a technology leakage abroad.
-An expert advisory committee is to be established to respond to a technology leakage abroad and a crime of an IP infringement.
-A future direction of an international cooperative investigation was discussed in a first advisory conference (May 25).
KIPO started strategic planning by holding an advisory conference to seek a plan to build an international cooperative investigation system to respond a technology leakage abroad and a crime of an IP infringement.
KIPO established the research advisory committee of an international cooperative investigation, which consists of the academia, legal and investigation experts, to set a research direction to build an international cooperative investigation system through the first advisory conference.
According to the National Intelligence Service, the damage incurred by Korean national core technology leakages abroad reached at least 25 trillion Korea Won over the last 5 years from 2018 to 2022. Nevertheless, since there were limits on getting the location of criminals who fled abroad or information of the companies which leaked abroad, it had trouble in arresting criminals relating to a technology leakage and an IP infringement.
The expert advisory committee consisting of academia, legal and investigation experts has been established to respond to that problem. In addition to the expert advisory committee, the KIPO’s technical police and outside specialists attended the first advisory conference, to find a solution. In the advisory conference, the 3 topics were presented, the cooperative cases by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism-the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol)-the National Police Agency to respond to online piracy, the cases of mutual legal assistance in criminal matters, and the research direction of an international cooperative investigation system to respond to a technology leak abroad and an IP infringement crime.
2. KIPO takes the lead to succeed in localization of core semiconductor equipment.
-KIPO held an on-site communication with Eugene Technology as an excellent company of the IP-based R&D strategic support project (hereinafter, referred to as ‘IP-R&D’) on May 25, 2023.
-KIPO published a plan to expand the IP-R&D and semiconductor industrial support by listening to the field.
In the on-site meeting with KIPO, the CEO of Eugene Technology emphasized that Eugene Technology was able to preoccupy core and original patents by participating in KIPO’s 2022 IP-R&D and the patent bigdata analysis was of great help in localization of the core semiconductor equipment.
KIPO visited Eugene Technology that participated in the IP-R&D and succeeded in localization of the semiconductor equipment, to positively listen to difficulties in the IP field of this company, to be reflected in policy.
◇ At the beginning stage of R&D, worldwide IP information is analyzed to support in:
1) setting the optimal R&D direction to solve a company’s problem at hand,
2) overcoming a foreign barrier patent, and
3) preoccupying a promising patent in a patent technology blank area.
Eugen Technology, which KIPO visited on May 25, participated in IP-R&D and as a result, it obtained a design idea regarding a core parts structure through an in-depth IP analysis and was supported with strategies both of R&D direction and dispute prevention for an equipment performance improvement.
Based on these, Eugen Technology developed a technology with no risk of an IP dispute, to secure 10 excellent patents in the thin film processing equipment field and to succeed in localization of the ‘atomic layer deposition equipment’ which was monopolized by a foreign country. As a result, this company has provided Korean and overseas global semiconductor companies with the equipment to which IP-R&D strategies applied and laid the foundation for growth to enter the global market.
The Commissioner of KIPO toured the production facility and the product showroom, etc., checked the specific performance of KIPO project reflected in the company’s technology development, listened to the diffabilities in the field and shared KIPO’s support policy.
KIPO’s IP-R&D strategic support project provided small and medium companies, universities and public research institutes with customized IP strategies, through 713 tasks, for the last one year with a budget of 43.5 billion Korea Won, to improve the results of R&D and to support in securing core patents.
IP-R&D strategic support project results in remarkably high quantitative and qualitative levels of patents, with an excellent patent rate by 1.4 times, and with a rate of filing patent applications in major foreign countries (US, Europe, Japan, etc.) by 2.5 time, compared to those of non-supported companies. In addition, the utilization performance, such as a patent transfer rate (1.2 times) and technical fees per contract (3.7 times), is also excellent.
3. A growth rate of Korean patent applications related to a high-definition map, which is a navigation for autonomous driving, was second in the world.
-Korea was second with 51.2%, a rate of increase in the number of patent applications relating to a high-definition map for autonomous driving, over the last 5 years.
While filing of the patent applications has been active in the field of a high-definition map for autonomous driving, which is necessary for safe autonomous driving, the increase rate of the relevant Korean patent applications recorded second in the world, showing a rapid growth.
According to KIPO’s analysis of the worldwide patent applications filed with the IP5 (Korea, US, China, EU and Japan), the number of the relevant patent applications rapidly increased over the last 5 years, by an annual average of 21.1%, showing an increase of 2.2 times (from 85 in 2015 to 183 in 2020).
By nationality of an applicant, US was first with 36% (239), the most applications, followed by China second with 17.8% (118), South Korea third with 15.1% (100), Israel fourth with 13.4% (89) and Japan fifth with 12.2% (81).
As to an average annual increase rate, China was first (86.1%), followed by South Korea second (51.2%), US (43.6%), Japan (13.6%) and Israel (22.3%).
As major applicants, Mobileye was first (13.3%, 88 applications), followed by State Farm second (7.5%, 50), Baidu third (7.2%, 48), DeepMap fourth (5.1%, 34) and Toyota fifth (4.1%, 27).
As Korean applicants, Hyundai Motor was eighth (2.6%, 17) to put its name in the top 10, Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute and Samsung 15th (each 1.4%, 9), STRADVISION and New Vision Networks 22nd (each 0.8%, 5).
Since the applicants include the companies in various fields, such as not only electrical components company (Mobileye), traditional automobile companies (Hyundai Motor) but also insurance (State Farm), information technology (IT) (Baidu, Uber), etc., it is confirmed that technologies in various fields have been combined for safe autonomous driving.
From the type of applicants, companies (93.1%) filed the most applications. However, in Korea, the percentage of the applications filed by companies was little low with 75% and the percentage of the applications filed by public sector was high as 16%.
The IP analysis data of a high-density map for autonomous driving is available to everyone, upon request, at a patent bigdata center (kpbcenter.re.kr).
4. Please easily use IP chatbot counseling!
-KIPO improved an IP-related AI (chatbot) counseling service.
-An access path for robot (chatbot) counseling is expanded, and an access internet address between robot (chatbot)-chatting counseling is provided, etc.
The people who need IP (patent, utility model, trademark, design, etc.) counseling are now able to more easily and rapidly get counseling through an improved conversation robot (chatbot) counseling service.
Celebrating the first anniversary of operating the converation robot (chatbot) counseling (May 17, 2023), KIPO published to provide an improved service thereof, to respond to the increasing demand of the conversation robot (chatbot) counseling and to improve the user accessibility and convenience.
In line with an increase in the number of IP applications, KIPO has provided the conversation robot (chatbot) counseling service (24 hours 365 days) by cooperating with the Korean Ministry of Public Administration and Security, to enhance the efficiency of the public IP consultation since May in 2022.
After the service started, the number of the conversation robot (chatbot) counseling cases has steadily increased, and the counseling ratio using the conversation robot (chatbot) counseling, among the total of the counseling cases, has continued to increase.
The major improvement content is to 1) expand an access path of the conversation robot (chatbot) counseling, 2) provide the mutual access internet address between the conversation robot (chatbot)-chatting counseling, 3) often update the question and answer database and strengthen the real-time collection of unanswered or wrongly answered information.
1) An access window of the conversation robot (chatbot) counseling is expanded from 2 (IP customer consultation center, nation secretary website) to 5 (by adding the KIPO website, the patent website, https://www.patent.go.kr/smart/portal/Main.do, and the KIPRIS website), to strengthen the user accessibility.
2) The Q&A database is often updated by reflecting the law and system amendments and listening to users’ opinions, to secure the timeliness of information. In addition, a highly professional counselor in real-time collects the consultation content as unanswered or wrongly answered and supplements learning data, to further improve the quality of the conversation robot (chatbot) counseling service.
5. KIPO held a Trade Mark 5 Forum (TM5).
-South Korea assuming the presidency held a midterm meeting of TM5 in Singapore.
-KIPO proposed ‘a trademark in a virtual space’ as a new cooperation task.
According to KIPO, on May 15, 2023, South Korea assuming the presidency held a midterm meeting of TM5 in Sands Expo and Convention Center in Singapore, to discuss the major pending issues in the trademark area. TM 5 is a cooperation forum in the trademark area, that started in 2012 and is comprised of the five main trademark offices including KIPO, USPTO, CNIPA, JPO and EPO.
After 5 years since 2018, South Korea was selected as a presidency of TM5 in 2023. As the presidency, South Korea is to hold a total of 3 meetings including this midterm meeting, aTM5 working meeting (June 15 and 16) and a TM5 annual meeting (September 11 and 12).
TM 5 and WIPO participated in this meeting, to check the progresses of 15 cooperative tasks, such as a trademark infringement awareness improvement plan, a malicious application prevention plan, etc., and to share each country’s opinions on new cooperative tasks. Notably, KIPO proposed the ‘research of a trademark in a virtual space’ as a new cooperative task, thanks to the increase in the number of the trademark applications relating to a virtual space (metaverse).
During the period (May 16~20) of an annual meeting of the International Trademark Association (INTA) which is the largest private association, KIPO also held a TM5 trademark user seminar (May 17) and operated a public relations booth for the Korea Trademark System in Singapore.