Annual Technical Report 2005 on Industrial Design Information Activities submitted by Austria (SCIT/ATR/ID/2005/AT)


Where URLs are requested below, it is preferred that either URLs which are likely to remain stable over time (three years or more) are provided, or home (main) page URLs are provided with a short explanation of how to access the corresponding information.

The expression "industrial designs" covers industrial designs and models. Offices which issue design patents should report their design patent information activities in this series of Annual Technical Reports.


I. Evolution of registration activities

Changes experienced in terms of application filings and grants (registrations) with respect to the previous year

The following numbers of application and registration of industrial designs in Austria in 2005 are presented below in comparison with the numbers in 2004 (=100%):

Design applications
2.913 in 2003
2.439 in 2004 (-16,27% compared to 2003)
2.080 in 2005 (-14,7% compared to 2004)

Design registrations
5.242 in 2003
3.787 in 2004 (-27,76% compared to 2003)
3.151in 2005 (-16,8% compared to 2004)

Trends or areas experiencing rapid changes with respect to the previous year

Like in 2004, application and registration activity in the design sector has slipped in 2005. The fall is due to the establishment of the Community Utility Model, which has created a second opportunity to apply for design protection for the territory of the Republic of Austria.

II. Matters concerning the generation, reproduction, and distribution of industrial design documents and of secondary sources of industrial design information, i.e., official gazettes

Publishing, including printing, copying techniques and electronic printing

The bibliographic data and images of the registered designs are published in the Austrian Design Gazette once a month.

Since 2006 the gazette is published monthly on the homepage of the APO. Only few copies are produced on paper and sent to other offices according to the bilateral agreements of the exchange of publication between offices.

Main types of announcements of the Office in the field of industrial design information

Design Gazette and in-house online database concerning designs.

Internet-Access to bibliographic data via two applications:
- free of charge access for search about application and registration number
- payed access for additional search parameters + access to all images and to register

Mass storage media and microforms used

The bibliographic data together with the classification symbols, a short description of the design are stored in the industrial design data base on the host system (Siemens BS2000) on magnetic discs. Backup on magnetic tapes.

Databases and office automation

Industrial Design database on the host system, including registry.

Outgoing letters are prepared with MS-Word with automatic filling of bibliographic data. In and outgoing communication all on paper.

III. Matters concerning classifying, reclassifying and indexing of industrial design information according to the classification systems applied

Classification and reclassification activities; Classification system used, e.g., International Classification for Industrial Designs (Locarno Classification), other classification (please indicate whether industrial designs are classified by your Office and, if so, which classification is used)

Industrial design applications are classified according to the International Classification for Industrial Designs (Locarno Classification).

The classification symbols are allotted by the applicant. The symbols are checked afterwards by the office and, if necessary, corrected.

Bibliographic data and processing for search purposes

Bibliographic data elements and classification symbols are searchable. The images are displayed together with these data elements.

IV. Search file establishment and upkeep

File building

Only electronic search files are used. The files are built up according to the Locarno Classification Scheme and are regularly updated.

Bibliographic data elements and classification symbols are searchable. The images are displayed together with these data elements.

No anterirority search is done during the registration procedure.



Storage, including mass storage media

Industrial Design Database on host system, magnetic discs. Images on MS-Windows Servers, magnetic discs.

Documentation from other offices maintained and/or considered part of the available search file

No data from other offices are part of the Austrian Design Database.

V. Activities in the field of computerized search systems for industrial designs

In-house systems (online/offline)

An online in-house system is installed using an internal industrial design data base. No external database is integrated.

External databases

External online access to the bibliographic data + images + registry information is available via password given by the Austrian Patent Office/Service and Information Center.

Free Online-access for search via application and registration number is available to bibliographic data + next renewal fee to pay.

Administrative management systems (e.g., register, legal status, statistics, administrative support, etc.)

The application and registration procedure, the examination for legality, the administration of the design register and the execution of the statistics are completely performed by an EDP management system (SIEMENS BS2000 Host System).

A project to allow for access to the images of industrial designs registered in Austria via the Internet-Information system of the office was started in 2000 and finalized in 2001. The images of industrial designs are displayed in addition to the bibliographic data. This service is liable to a fee.

An electronic registry for Appeals and Nullities including work-flow information is installed. The registry is accessible via the Intranet of the office.

Equipment used (hardware, including the types of terminal and network used, and software), data carriers used

Host system: Siemens BS2000
Terminal: Windows-PC, access to host via emulation and/or Browser
Network: Ethernet
Data carries: magnetic discs

VI. Administration of industrial design services available to the public (relating to facilities, e.g., for lodging applications, registering designs, assisting clients with search procedures, obtaining official publications and registry extracts)

Information services available to the public (including computerized services and search files contained in libraries remote from your Office and industrial design information posted by your Office on the World Wide Web).

The Austrian Patent Office offers free information services concerning legal questions, details of registration procedures, property rights or due fees, which can be submitted verbally (personally or by phone).

Legal and technical experts of the Austrian Patent Office can be consulted for legal and technical questions in connection with an intellectual property right, a pending application or for an intended application. The legal information service is available personally or by telephone free of charge on all working days.

At the information centre in the Austrian Patent Office information is provided by telephone, e-mail or face-to-face about all national intellectual property applications and granted rights, about published European and international patent applications designated for Austria, as well as about registered international trademarks with effect for Austria, and about community trademarks of the European Union. This information covers all bibliographic data of the mentioned protection rights. This inquiry can also be made in the library by self-service (with support of the library personnel) on computer workstations.

The register administrators of the Austrian Patent Office provide information concerning the current legal status of all effective patents, utility models, semiconductor rights, supplementary protection certificates, trademarks and designs. The officials in charge can be consulted at their consultation hours about specific applications, e.g. the correct trademark or design classification of a sign or product.

Information services of the Service and Information Center (serv.ip, former TRF)

The Service and Information Center of the Austrian Patent Office (serv.ip) started its activities in the fall of 1994 pursuant to the appropriate regulations of the amendment of the Patent Law of 1992 and the corresponding ordinance of 1994. The central purpose of the founding of this enterprise was to offer customer-oriented service and information products in the area of patents, trademarks and designs in a commercial manner. In the field of industrial designs, the following services are offered

Written information:
The Service and Information Sector also establishes written information concerning industrial designs on request.

Uncertified register extract:
This information product concerning , among others, industrial designs covers data with regard to the owner of the property right as well as data of the application and registration.

Express service:
Register extracts as well as written information are supplied within 24 hours after receipt of order by fax and by email upon request.

External on-line information:
Internet access to the database of the Austrian Patent Office for information concerning patents, utility models, designs and supplementary protection certificates is available. Registry status for industrial design is available online.

The homepage of the Austrian Patent Office contains general information as well as detailed references for applicants concerning forms for application and the current fees for all industrial property rights, namely patent, utility model, trademark, design, supplementary protection certificate as well as semiconductor protection. All register data, especially information about time limit and amount of the next annual fee, are free of charge. Full access to the database of the Austrian Patent Office, which covers all property rights for Austria according to different search criteria, e.g. owner, inventor, international patent classification, application and register number, is made possible by using a password.

Address of the Austrian Homepage:

VII. Matters concerning mutual exchange of industrial design documentation and information

International or regional cooperation in the exchange of industrial design information, e.g., in the form of official gazettes

The Austrian Design Gazette is mutually exchanged on a bilateral basis with almost all of the WIPO Member States.

Exchange of machine-readable information, e.g., data contained on CD-ROM or magnetic tape

Machine-readable information exchange of industrial design data has been started for the EU-Project e-Mage.

Aim of e-Mage: Online-Search in industrial design + trademark databases. Data from France, Portugal, Hungary, Austria, international design + trademarks, Community trademarks + design; open to other countries. Search via bibliographic data and/or similarity search via images. Natural langugage search in classifications.

VIII. Matters concerning education and training including technical assistance to developing countries

Promotional activities (seminars, exhibitions, visits, advertising, etc.)

Since the 1980’s the Austrian Patent Office has been organizing training courses and seminars to an increasing extent both in the office and externally in Austria’s provinces in order to facilitate an efficient use of industrial property rights in the practical business and to inform future decision makers about the instruments of intellectual property.

External seminars are frequently organized together with partners, like the Chamber of commerce (WKÖ), Institute for Promotion of Trade and Industry (WIFI), Austria wirtschaftsservice (AWS), Forschungsförderungsgesellschaft (FFG), technology transfer centers, universities, other authorities, inventor’s federation or the bar association. The cooperation with partners frequently improves the contacts with the target groups using the existing communication structure. Seminars take place also in cooperation with other patent offices.

In order to expand these demanded training course activities additionally two seminar series were started in the Austrian Patent Office in 2001, which are organized by the Austrian Patent Office/serv.ip (Service and Information Sector.) As a result of the interest, these seminar series were continued in 2005. One of said seminar series concerns an overview of the industrial property rights. The second seminar series deals with special topics, e.g., software protection, biotechnology, national, community and international trademarks etc., and is arranged under consultation of external experts in the respective area.

Furthermore, 2005 a tour (roadshow) in Austria’s provinces was realized by the APO and partners with the goal to improve information on industrial property protection especially for SMEs.

A further important information platform, in particular for professionals, who are potential clients of the patent office, but did not yet contact the office due to a lack of basic information, are domestic and international trade fairs. The Austrian Patent Office was represented in the year 2005 in four fairs.

Summarising the activity in this field:
in total 46 seminars and events for universities, high schools, SMEs and the general public with 8875 participants.

Training courses for national and foreign participants

Training courses and exchange of information were held for participants from Bahrain, China, GCC and Korea during 2005.

Audiovisual means: Power Point Presentations.

Assistance to developing countries (sending consultants and experts, receiving trainees from developing countries, etc.)

Training courses are held for patent experts from developing countries in co-operation with the WIPO since 1977. Patent information and documentation are the main topics. The participants in the WIPO/Austria Training Course 2005 came from Belarus, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Jamaica, Kazakhstan, Malawi, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Uzbekistan, Thailand and Ukraine.

The program of the course provided practical training in the use of the International Patent Classification for file organization and searching as well as in the methodology of retrieving information from patent literature in search files and from online databases for patent examination, state-of-the-art searches and other technological information purposes.
Furthermore the curriculum included a demonstration of the Austrian Patent Office's operation and administration, applications of the Internet as well as CD-ROM technology and utilization.
The training course provided also information about international treaties such as TRIPS, PCT, SPLT and EU-COMPAT as well as basic knowledge about trademarks and design.

IX. Other relevant matters

For further information about activities of the office in 2005, one may also refer to the “Annual Report of the Austrian Patent Office 2005”, published in German and English on the Homepage of the office .