Patents on computer-related inventions in India

Guido Noto La Diega

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In India, sec. 3(k) of the Patents Act 1970 clearly excludes the patentability of computer programmes per se. For many years, the regime of computer-implemented inventions has been unclear, until the Controller General of Patents, Designs and Trade Marks (the Indian homologous of the Intellectual Property Office) issued its Guidelines on the examination of computer-related inventions. Notably, this gave rise the civil society’s protests; indeed, there was the fear that the government was surreptisciously allowing the patentability of computer programmes per se. Therefore, the guidelines have been withdrawn and recently a new version has been published. It openly reaffirms the exclusion of the software patents and introduces a three-step test to determine the applicability of sec. 3(k) of the Patents Act to computer-related inventions. This opinion focuses the new guidance, by placing it in the context of the leading role of India in the technological and social developments revolving around the Internet of Things.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)009
JournalIntellectual Property Rights
Issue numberS1
Publication statusPublished - 28 Nov 2016


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