Case Study

Securing IP rights

Gannons worked with the development team for a new mobile phone, on protecting IP rights for the company.

Our clients wanted to be left in the strongest position possible to stop rip off copies being produced and sold at prices which under cut theirs.

Protecting the brand legally

The mobile phone product gave rise to the following assets requiring registration:

The name and logo

We took the business through registration of its name and logo. As the logo was a word it could be registered as both a word and image.

The website

The business needed a website and a domain name tying in with the brand name. The content of the website is copyrighted.

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is responsible for allocating IP addresses and manages the domain system to make sure that no two names are identical. If our client finds that there is another similar domain name as theirs, trying to divert customers away from their site, they can use the Uniform Rapid Suspension System to quickly resolve the issue.

The name of the product

The phone had a unique trade description – the name. The name can be registered as a trade mark. We recommended that the business checked the availability of a name before investing money on marketing.

The operating System

There was an operating system to enable the phone to work. The software itself was protected by copyright and confidential information. The name of the operating system also could be trademarked, as it was unique.

The design of the product

The look of the mobile phone could be trademarked. However, it can also be protected though design rights. Trade mark duration lasts longer than design rights, so it is favoured by a number of companies. In practice, it can be difficult to register packaging, but with sheer creativity and clever communication with the IPO, this is possible as well.

Special features developed under patents

In order to stay ahead of competitors, research and development teams will develop new features to include in the mobile phones.

The developers may look at patents that have expired and released in the public domain. They may then use that patent such as the patent for a camera and develop it to make it novel for the product – in our example the mobile phone.

They could then register the adapted camera technology as a new patent under a new and unique name. The name of the patent can also be registered as a trade mark.

The app on the phone

There are several registrations connected with the app. The source code used in the software will be protected by copyright and confidential information. The display of the app was protected through design rights. The name of the app was trademarked. Lastly the logos used to identify the app were registered as trademarks.

John Deane

John solves commercial problems for SMEs and their investors. It is said that he is unbelievably practical and seasoned in finding the right solution without too much fuss. He has an established reputation in the technology, art and media industries.

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