The search report established for a patent application is transmitted to the applicant together with copies of any cited documents. (Wiki)
"The search is an essential element of the grant procedure, being designed to identify prior art relevant to the application. The intention is to make it possible to determine, on the basis of the documents mentioned in the search report, whether and to what extent the invention is patentable (...). Knowledge of the prior art forms the basis for examination of the application by the examining divisions. It is also important for applicants, giving them a basis for deciding whether to continue prosecuting their applications and have them examined. Lastly, it is also important for the public and especially for competitors, enabling them to gain an idea of the scope of any protection that might be granted."
Patent Search is similar to Google Search you use on your PC or smartphone. You access an online search system; you use a command line to input keywords. Even search line syntaxis is more or less the same... well, check it for every system you start to use. By the way, Google Patents is a popular free Patent search database, visually hardly distinguishable from Google search, and also functionally equivalent to specialised free Patent search databases, like Espacenet or Patentscope.
The search results come in similar form, too. Depending on keywords and syntaxis used, one receives a list of links to online documents. A difference is: Google Search provides links to any websites and documents containing search keywords, meanwhile, Patent Search Databases reward with the list of invention patent documents only.
Next, could you formalise yourself what you do with the list of Google Search links? - And here, you enter into the domain of Search Report understanding and preparation. It is much of what Patent Search Report experts do. Usually, you have an idea of what answers you search for your question. You scroll the list of Google Search links and analyse their contents to find the most relevant answers to the idea questions. Some sources, like Wikipedia, give a general understanding of the subject matter. Some others may disclose specific information you already know. Rarely, you could find a single source with all your questions answered, or more often, you collect the answers from several sources. Finally, in some cases, you even may not find the answers needed and, therefore, you have to invent them by yourself.
When it comes to Patent Search Report, the Expert receives your invention as a patent application with the list of precise idea answers (or claims). Being skilled in the art, he applies keywords and searches Patent database for other patents as sources of prior art. Presumably, he/she will find differently relevant sources in the search results. The Expert would select the most relevant ones to the invention, and measure their relevance to the invention claims regarding Novelty and Inventive Step. Finally, the expert writes a Search Report with the most common indication. The most possible letter „X“, „Y“ and „A“ are found in the report.
We prepared you a short table showing the Search Report example and indicating the meaning of these Search Report letters:
Does it mean the withdrawal of the application if you have got „X“-s for all claims of your invention? Not necessary. You may also receive Search Opinion suggesting that the Novelty and the Inventive step of your invention idea have not been disclosed enough in the application submitted. Therefore, you are welcome to review claims of your invention and re-submit the application again.
The Search Report is the first document from the expert about your patent application. It does not mean, you need to abandon or withdraw your application, but it means you need to evaluate the report and decide which way to proceed with the prosecution of the application. If you need assistance in understanding a search report or preparing the corrections of the patent application, preparing the reply to examiner, please contact the most qualified patent experts at Idea Protection.