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An important market: software patenting in Japan


Kenji Sugimura and Rebecca Chen

An important market: software patenting in Japan

Developing a robust international patent prosecution strategy is essential in today's global economy, and Japan is a vital jurisdiction, say Kenji Sugimura and Rebecca Chen.

Software is one of the most innovative and fastest growing industries in the world, leading corporations to turn increasingly to patents to protect their soft ware-related inventions. Businesses have begun to leverage the value of soft ware-related patents, evidenced by the prolific mobile patent wars and the wave of multibillion dollar patent portfolio acquisitions.

Including Japan in a company’s international patent prosecution strategy is crucial for several reasons. Japan is the third largest economy in the world. Additionally, Japan has the second highest number of registered software-related patents in the world.

These registered patents cover a wide range of technologies including embedded soft ware in consumer goods and appliances and developments in vehicle network technology. Japanese companies also rank among the top patent filers.

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Software, patent prosecution strategies, JPO, Japan Patent Act