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PATENTS IN ELECTRONICS INDUSTRY IN INDIA

Electronics Industry in India

India share in global hardware electronics production has been increased from 1.3% in 2012 to 3% in 2018[1]. There is significant growth in digital technologies and adaption of high-end technology such as Internet of Things (IoT), 4G/LTE networks and roll out of 5G.

Semiconductor industry sector is the most important sector in the electronics industry. Semiconductors and associated passive components are the basic elements in electronic technology. Such technology is required by large number of industries: including telecommunications, information technology, industrial machinery and automation, medical electronics, automobile, engineering, power and solar photovoltaic, defence and aerospace, consumer electronics, and appliances.           

Criteria for Patent in India

For an Electronic Invention to be patentable[2], the criteria are as follows:

  1. It should be novel: invention should not have been published or used anywhere in the world before the date of filing the patent application in the patent office.
  2. Must involve an inventive step: a feature of invention should involve a technical advancement as compared to existing knowledge or having economic significance or both
  3. Capable of industrial application: invention is capable of being made or used in an industry
  4. It should not fall under the categories of inventions that are excluded from patentability under the concerned jurisdiction

Of all the electronic invention, patent for software or computer program is questionable all over the world, so does in India. Software which is an important part of the electronic devices and electronic controlled devices, are excluded from the scope of patentable invention in India under Section 3(k) of the Indian Patent Act i.e. a mathematical or business method or a computer programme per se or algorithms, are not patentable.

Computer programs with technical application in industry and embedded in hardware are considerable for patent protection.

Software related inventions patented in are-

  • Siemens was granted patent No. 195440 in respect of a method for testing system components of an object-oriented program.
  • Philips Electronics was granted patent No. 194663 in respect of an interactive entertainment apparatus operable to output sequences of image frames.

Electronics Industry and Patents

Following foreign and Indian companies are amongst the top companies that file patent applications for electronic inventions in India:

  • Qualcomm Incorporated
  • Samsung India Software Operations Private Limited
  • Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited
  • Philips Electronics
  • LG Electronics Inc.
  • Telefonaktiebolaget Lm Ericssion (Publ)
  • Thomson Licensing
  • Huawei Technologies Co.Ltd.
  • Sony Corporation
  • Dell Products
  • Koninklijke Philips Electronics

Source: Orbit

 Patent Filing Trend & Electronics Industry

As per IPO annual report, the number of applications for patents filed in 2017-2018 was 47, 854 reflects an increase of 5.3%[3] in overall filing which were 45,444 in 2016-2017. The filing trend shows modest growth in almost every field of technology, except in the field of computer/electronics, general engineering, polymer science and technology and metallurgy & material science Detail of filing trend of application of different field of technology is below.

Source: Annual Report 2017-18 published by the Indian Patent Office

Further, the number of patents granted in the field of computer/electronics with the Indian Patent Office in the year 2017-18 were 1028. The patents granted from the year 2013 to 2018 is shown below:

Source: Annual Report 2017-18 published by the Indian Patent Office

Government Policy to boost Patents in Electronics Industry in India

“An India where Intellectual Property stimulates creativity and innovation for the benefit of all” is the vision of our National IPR Policy.

The market for electronics products in India has shown significant increase and the demand for electronics hardware in the country is projected to increase by US $228 Billion by 2020 from over US $ 100 Billion in 2016-17[4]. Creating opportunities for companies in the ESDM sector to meet the increasing demand and also India to become next export hub. Initiatives like Make in India, Digital India, Skill India, and Start up India and Atal Innovation mission proven to be catalyst to electronic manufacturing.

Recent initiatives[5] taken by Indian Government in this regard are-

  1. Target to achieve turnover of USD 400 billion by 2020 involving investment of over USD 100 billion and employment to around 28 million people. This includes USD 55 billion in chip design and embedded software industry;
  2. Setting up over 200 Electronics Manufacturing Clusters (EMCs);
  3. Upscale education to over 2500 PhDs annually by 2020;
  4. Transform India into global hub for Electronics System Design and Manufacturing (ESDM);
  5. Current proposals of USD 10.503 billion investment include:
Investment size (approx)Technical field
Rs 52,000 crore (USD 8.4 billion)Semiconductor wafer fabrication
Rs 791 crore (USD 127 million)Consumer electronics and appliances
Rs 8218 crore (USD 1.3 billion)Hand held devices and telecom
Rs 1990 crore (USD 321 million)LED fab and LED products
Rs 710 crore (USD 114 million)Automotive electronics
Rs 62 crore (USD 10 million)Solar photovoltaics
Rs 210 crore (USD 34 million)Strategic electronics
Rs 750 crore (USD 121 million)Semiconductor ATMP

Source: National Policy on Electronics[6]

Source: Electronics Manufacturing Clusters (EMCs)[7]

Patent Agents, Engineers, Analysts and Lawyers assist client’s right from Patent Searching to Patent prosecution of patents pertaining to mechanical engineering. These teams meticulously works on drafting of such patent applications as well as replying to Office Actions.


[1] https://www.investindia.gov.in/sector/electronic-systems

[2] https://meity.gov.in/content/patents

[3] http://www.ipindia.nic.in/writereaddata/Portal/IPOAnnualReport/1_110_1_Annual_Report_2017-18_English.pdf

[4] https://www.investindia.gov.in/sector/electronic-systems

[5] https://73a323c9-5974-4f3b-a139-22fd3b3373cb.filesusr.com/ugd/dfac0b_f78973b2998344f4b013e4b17b5260ef.pdf

[6] https://73a323c9-5974-4f3b-a139-22fd3b3373cb.filesusr.com/ugd/dfac0b_f78973b2998344f4b013e4b17b5260ef.pdf

[7] https://www.investindia.gov.in/sector/electronic-systems

For more information on Patent Rights & electronic industry in India please contact us at info@ssrana.com or submit a query.

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Patent Law in India

Patent Procedure in India

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