Although COVID wreaked a lot of havoc on several industries worldwide, inventors were not deterred from showcasing their ingenuity. It was a challenging time for the entire world, yet inventors took the challenge head-on.
We witnessed several groundbreaking technologies and new inventions from numerous sectors worldwide. We are pretty sure many patent attorneys will have their hands full trying to protect these new ideas. From battery-run face masks, delivery robots to non-electric ventilators, inventors did not disappoint as they upped their game in the face of adversity.
In South Africa, Natalie Raphil put her knowledge of 3D modeling, visual prototype, and 3D printing to great use. The founder of Robots Can Think South Africa, an Artificial Intelligence company, used 3D printers to make 100 face masks daily. All of which were sent to major hospitals in Johannesburg.
In June 2020, 1point5 app was launched by the United Nations Technology Innovation Labs program. This social distancing app was built to help the world return safely to work during the pandemic. The app scans nearby phones through Bluetooth, and users get a warning when another device nears the 1.5-meter perimeter.
Another inventor also created a secure website to help fight the mental health impact of COVID 19 on people through online education. The website is a mental health hub called CAMH with lots of data on ways to manage anxiety and stress.
It also has other resources that help people depending on the challenge or condition they are facing. Also, it came with a mobile app that comes with discussion boards, self-assessments, and several coping tools for people.
This heart-warming news wouldn’t have been possible if inventors did not get the right patent services, or much-needed patent help to protect their new invention. Thankfully, the USPTO (the United States Patent & Trademark Office) did not disappoint.
The body played a huge part in helping inventors get patent help at the start of the pandemic. Not only did they assist patent attorneys to improve their patent service as the pandemic raged, but they also made several efforts to help patent applicants that were severely affected by COVID.
Currently, the pandemic still rages on with the discovery of newer COVID strains. However, the USPTO assumed a formal role in its effort to combat the virus by launching a pilot program that ended late last year. The program offered applicants a lot of financial flexibility as long as their inventions were geared towards combating the deadly virus to a halt.
The pilot program was launched on the 17th of September 2020 and was expected to run for twelve months, but due to a number of factors – including how effective the program was – it didn’t end until the 31st of December 2021.
With the advent of vaccines and booster shots, the world is on the path to normalcy again. A major lesson from the pandemic is that inventors need to always be at the forefront of innovation, as COVID didn’t give us the luxury of time.
That being said, the need for inventors to get the right patent attorney cannot be understated. This is because all the inventor’s good work can be undone without having the right team to protect his/her ideas and inventions.