According to a release note, the State Intellectual Property Office of China (SIPO) launched a new version of the Chinese language interface of its "Patent Search and Analysis" platform on 25 July 2016. This database allows searches in Chinese patents, utility models and designs from 1985 onwards. Aimed mainly at domestic users, this source also includes patent documents from various other jurisdictions worldwide. Free registration and login is necessary for most features, including display and download of Chinese full texts and original documents (PDF versions), citations and family members.
With the relaunch, various functionalities were added and improved, e.g. a customisable search interface, direct links to cited references and a cross-lingual retrieval option between various languages. Legal status information can now also be searched with publication numbers. In the older version, this was only possible with application numbers. In addition, the platform offers a separate search interface for medical patents, various dictionaries and analysis tools. As previously, there are corresponding interfaces in English and other languages. However, these are currently still the same as before.
A first step-by-step guide introducing various features of new Chinese interface has been uploaded to the "Searching in databases" section of the EPO's virtual helpdesk on Asian patent information. More guides will be added in the near future.