Updated Patent Coverage on PatBase

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Update: This post has been edited to reflect that PatBase is jointly operated by Minesoft and RWS Group.

As part of their recent system update (which went final on December 1st), Minesoft and RWS Group’s patent search system PatBase has touted their improved country coverage. These changes are ongoing, unlike the feature changes we covered in a previous blog post. Today we’ll take a look at some of the more interesting improvements.

Including more coverage is always a positive development for a patent search system (unless the data is corrupt or inaccurate). That being said, certain coverage serves to merely catch up to the competitive standard while other coverage nips at the heels of the state of the art or even pushes the envelope of patent coverage itself. Many systems are seeking to add more complete coverage for emerging markets such as BRICK (Brazil, Russia, India, China, Korea, and the many variants of this term). Mirroring economic development, these countries are the next frontier of patenting activity and thus are an essential part of a worldwide prior art search, a detail captured by the international and multi-lingual patent search team at Landon IP.

Read on to find out how the recent PatBase updates have impacted a couple of these key countries as well as an old standard collection!

Republic of Korea

At the time this was written (as is true of all of these ever changing coverage estimates), PatBase had expanded Korean (KR) full text coverage to date back to 1980 for patent applications (although “some descriptions are missing”). Korean full text data is searchable and in native language. Granted patents see title/abstract/claims coverage back to 1980 (although not comprehensively so). Utility model application coverage includes full text back to 1998, while granted utility model coverage consists of title/abstract/claims coverage back to 1999. Bibliographic coverage for KR documents dates back to 1978. These collections are rapidly developing and expanding. Less than a month ago full text Korean coverage merely dated back to 2004!


According to PatBase documentation, Indian granted patents have full text dating back to April 2010 with more updates to the backfile coming soon. Bibliographic data for granted patents goes all the way back to 1912 while bibliographic data for patent applications and designs respectively go back to 2005 and 2009.

United States

One longtime strength of Google Patents has been its extensive and mostly complete (if occasionally bug riddled and garbled) US full text collection. Other search system providers such as Questel and Thomson also have substantially extended US full text collections. PatBase continues to expand its US granted patents full text database, which currently dates to 1971. While searching through the system in practice, full text US documents can be found dating into the 1950’s, but this coverage is still being uploaded and filled out and is not complete.

I would be remiss if I did not note the coverage of the major patent search systems does vary, and in some cases very drastically. This look into recent PatBase changes was undertaken to highlight a recent update to the system. To take a look at how your system stacks up to your needs (or to PatBase in these areas), check out our Quick Table Comparisons feature. You can also take a gander at our newly updated Interactive Patent Coverage Map to find out which systems cover the specific country or patenting authority you’re interested in.

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This post was edited by Intellogist® Team member Chris Jagalla. The Intellogist blog is provided for free by Intellogist’s parent company, Landon IP, a major provider of patent search, technical translation, and information services.


One Response

  1. […] BRIC(K) countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China, Korea) that we talked about in our previous post on the new PatBase coverage, these countries in Southeastern Asia are thought to be the next wave of economic development, and […]

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