Google has added four new sources of international patents to its Patent Search with the aim of increased discoverability of prior art for future patent applications.
Google's Patent Search has been available for United States patents since 2006 and is a much appreciated resource for anyone who needs to discover what patents already exist. Last year it was extended to include European patents from the EPO (European Patents Office)and a Prior Art Finder was added to make easier the task of establishing that the idea for a patent is novel.
Now patents documents from China, Germany, Canada, and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) are included.
Given the way in which technology spans the globe, adding four more sources of patents is to be welcomed and thanks to Google Translate the problem of reading documents in their original language is removed - all patents are also available in English.