The latest lifestyle has resulted in considerable appreciation of health and fitness. Consequently, everyone is investing a lot of effort in losing weight, increasing physical activity, with a view to enhance health and become fit. At technology front, enormous surge has been observed across health and fitness tracking gadgets and smartphone applications, which generally measure overall movement of one’s body along with patterns covering step count, exercise, sleep, diet, and assist the users in setting targets combined with motivations to achieve them.
Patent attorneys assist clients by developing a strong patent strategy to protect innovations in IoT space covering wearable devices and fitness industry innovations.
Relevant keywords were used to search patent trends in US, which helped in analyzing companies that have filed most number of patents, time trends on patent filings and most relevant patent classification for healthcare and fitness tracking, specially wearable gadgets.
The wearable medical device market is suddenly growing at a rapid pace. In fact, a recent report predicted a compound annual growth rate of 14 percent through 2020 driven by increasing demand for early diagnosis and preventative medicine. These devices like eyeglasses, watches, clothing, jewelry, and even contact lenses, monitor everything from blood pressure to body temperature and have revolutionized the way consumers approach their health. But it’s new technology companies who are poised to benefit most from the trend because of strong patents on fitness monitoring technology.
While Medtronic, General Electric, Eli Lilly Company and other big players have traditionally controlled the health care monitoring markets, newer companies like Google, Nike, Jawbone and Fitbit control the majority of strong fitness monitoring patents. They also dominate patents that cover the integration of monitoring technology. As fitness monitoring technology is increasingly incorporated into health care, these companies are vying to displace the old guard in the medical device market.
The most relevant patent classifications based on highly active patent classes (US Class or USC) are:
Remaining class details may be seen at US Patent office website.
Medical devices or Health tracking device by Basis Science is aimed at targeting the measurement of movement user’s body makes throughout the day and subsequently tracks the habits of such movement. As a differentiator, Basis’s health tracker accounts for actual heart rate, skin temperature and perspiration into its data.
By using the body’s actual chemistry, the device is able to provide an accurate and comprehensive fitness tracker for recording calories burned, intensity of movement and useful patterns in the user’s habits.
FitBit Inc has been granted a patent titled Multimode Sensor Devices, which covers Biometric Monitoring Devices, or BMDs that have multiple device modes depending on operational conditions of the devices, e.g., motion intensity, device placement, and/or activity type, the device modes are associated with various data processing algorithms. In some embodiments of this patent, the BMD is implemented as a wrist-worn or arm-worn device. In some other embodiments of this patent, methods for tracking physiological metrics using the BMDs are provided. Full copy of patent may be found here.
Patent attorneys draft patents for wearable technology innovations using their expertise to protect unique combinations of hardware and software-related features. Design patents or industrial design protection can provide protection rights over the aesthetic looks, whereas utility patents or innovation patents can protect patent claims defining the functional features of the innovation.
Fitness brands have become synonymous with fashion brands and the major industry players (FitBit, Google, Apple, Samsung, Garmin) are entering the phase of complicated wearable devices as per the projected consumer demand trends of 2020. Growth in branding efforts results in potential trademark infringement activities, which can be prevented by brand protection and anti-counterfeiting actions. Trademark attorneys assist clients in creating a portfolio of registered trademarks to establish a strong branding presence in the marketplace for both offline activities and online eCommerce transactions.
Advocate Rahul Dev is a Patent Attorney & International Business Lawyer practicing Technology, Intellectual Property & Corporate Laws. He is reachable at rd (at) patentbusinesslawyer (dot) com & @rdpatentlawyer on Twitter.
Quoted in and contributed to 50+ national & international publications (Bloomberg, FirstPost, SwissInfo, Outlook Money, Yahoo News, Times of India, Economic Times, Business Standard, Quartz, Global Legal Post, International Bar Association, LawAsia, BioSpectrum Asia, Digital News Asia, e27, Leaders Speak, Entrepreneur India, VCCircle, AutoTech).
Regularly invited to speak at international & national platforms (conferences, TV channels, seminars, corporate trainings, government workshops) on technology, patents, business strategy, legal developments, leadership & management.