Digital technologies

Digital technologies are finding their way into every aspect of our modern lives. High levels of digital innovation are causing rapid, even disruptive change to many industries. These technologies include computing and telecommunications, but reach far into other areas like healthcare, transport and agriculture.

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Hardware and software

Patents protect new inventions like products and processes, including inventions carried out using computers.

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Artificial intelligence

AI presents the patent system with a number of challenges and opportunities.

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Fourth Industrial Revolution

In December 2017, the EPO presented a study in co-operation with the Handelsblatt Research Institute that examines this profound technology trend that is being observed across a whole range of technical fields.

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Patents and standards

Standards ensure compatibility and interoperability of components, products and services, often from different manufacturers. They define a set of technical requirements for specific items, materials, components, systems or services, or for particular methods or procedures.

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