How to Patent an App Idea? (Everything You Need to Know)

Author image By Manish Patel  |  Tuesday, May 9, 2023 09:13 AM  |  7 min read  |   520

How much does it cost to patent an app idea?

If you were wondering, “Can I patent an idea for an app?” Here is your answer. Yes. A patent may protect your app concept. Before you share your next big app concept with the world, patent your app idea for exclusivity.

Do you worry that it will be taken from you and used by someone else before you can put it to good use? Fortunately, intellectual property law protects app concepts, namely trademark, patent, and mobile app copyright or patent law.

However, you may be wondering how to patent an idea for an app? Many new businesses and entrepreneurs think that patenting an app concept is the best way to prevent others from developing, using, or selling their invention.

Protecting your app concept by getting a patent is crucial in today’s more competitive app store environment. However, your app’s concept must be innovative and original for it to be protected by patent law. The app should be something other than a carbon copy of existing ones. Is it possible to patent an app, and how to patent an app idea, though? The six easy steps to patenting an app idea are as follows.

What are the Steps to Patent Your App Idea?

What are the Steps to Patent Your App Idea?

These six steps can help you get your app concept patented.

Step 1: Pick the Kind of Patent That You Need

The mobile app patent you choose should reflect the nature of your creation with a formal patent claim. There are primarily three kinds of patents to select to create a successful app after the patent.

Technical Patents: The scope of a patent in this category is the practical application of an invention or discovery. Patents for useful inventions typically last between 14 and 20 years. A utility patent is usually the best option when seeking protection for a mobile app.
A patent on a product’s design protects its visual appearance in the marketplace. The duration of a design patent is between 14 and 20 years.
Plant patents protect varieties of plants that are propagated without using seeds by means other than cuttings. The term of a plant patent is 20 years.

Step 2: Do a Thorough Patent Search

Investigate your app concept thoroughly to see whether it has previously been developed and patented. Conduct investigations on an idea patented all across the globe to see if any competitors are infringing on your ideas. Your patent application’s chances of getting approved will improve if there are no other identical applications or patents.

Step 3: Draft and Submit Your Application for an App Patent

Verifying that your app concept has yet to be patented previously is the first step in the patent application process and patent examination costs. Any application should meet the following requirements. Make sure to include specifics in the application about your app so that it may be evaluated for originality and lack of obviousness.

Step 4: Submit a Provisional or Final Patent Application

Filing for a patent is the next step after fully describing your idea in the application. The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is a government agency that must petition to get a patent and cost to patent an app idea. Getting an app patent may take many years and several revisions. Each kind of patent has a unique fee structure at the USPTO. On, you may see the new fee structure that will take effect on January 1, 2023.

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Step 5: Reply to Official Actions promptly

The patent examiner will review your application after payment has been received. The examiner may issue a written office action asking for more communication on the application. Your application or other information may be needed to process this request. To prevent unnecessary setbacks, it is crucial to carefully and promptly respond to the action request to get the app idea patent.

Step 6: Payment Required to Maintain Your Patented App

Your patent will need to be maintained regularly if it is granted. To keep your app patent in effect, you’ll need to pay a maintenance charge on a monthly or yearly basis. The time and effort required to get a patent for your software might be substantial. A patent attorney can help you through the full patenting procedure, but their services are costly. Now that you know how to get an app patented, we’ll answer some additional questions you may have regarding how to patent mobile app ideas and protect your creation.

What Are The Benefits to Patent An App Idea?

The Benefits to Patent An App Idea?

Patenting your app idea is surely beneficial for your business. Here

1. Competitive Advantage

Innovation and creativity are the keys to staying ahead of your competitors in the long run. People always look for something new and unique, and your success is guaranteed if you have a great app idea that is appealing and unusual.

Yet you have to ensure that you are the only one to bring your app idea to the market. Patenting your app idea will prevent your competitors from copying your unique concept. You will have the exclusive rights to launch the application in the market.

For a provisional patent for an app, you can get a “patent pending” label for your app. Thus, no other business can copy your app idea without your permission.

2. Digital Asset Protection

When you patent a mobile app idea, it helps protect your digital assets. In addition, you receive the damages, grievances, and compensations for the infringement of the app idea.

How Much Does it Cost to Patent an App Idea?

How to Patent an App Idea? (Everything You Need to Know)

We have discussed the detailed steps of patenting an app idea. Now the next question is the cost. How much will it require you to invest in patenting your app idea? Well, it depends on the type of patent you are aiming at for your app idea.

Here are the Basic Charges to Patent an App Idea-

  • Elementary filing fee: $65-290+
  • Patent search fee: $160-650
  • Patent Examination fee: $185-750
  • 3.5-year maintenance fee: $350-1700 (involves keeping a granted patent valid)
  • 7.5-year maintenance fee: $950-3600
  • 11.5-year maintenance fee: $1800-7500+

The app patent can cost anywhere between $2000 to $15000. The range includes both provisional and non-provisional patent prices. For provisional patent, the cost ranges between $2000 and $5000, whereas for non-provisional, it ranges between $10000 and $15000.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Obtaining a Patent for Your App Idea:

1. What Exactly Does It Mean to “Patent an App Idea”?

Your ideas will be protected from unauthorized use by a patent why patenting an app idea is a kind of intellectual property law. It allows you to prevent others from making money from your concept. It will ensure that nobody steals your concept and passes it off as their own. Patents in the United States are issued by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), whereas Canadians submit patent applications to the Canadian Intellectual Property Office.

Consider Apple’s 1994 lawsuit against Microsoft over patents for mobile applications. Microsoft, the business said, “borrowed” the concept of the GUI from the company’s Lisa and Macintosh computers. Apple ultimately sided with Microsoft since it could not get a patent for its invention.

2. Is it Possible to Patent an App Concept?

A quick response would be “Yes.” A mobile app is a single entity with many potential modes of operation, making it eligible for patent protection. The app’s code cannot be copyrighted since intellectual property laws do not protect computer programs by mobile app development companies.

The steps an app takes to complete a task may therefore be protected as intellectual property. For instance, the app’s process on a smartphone or other device communicates with a distant server that stores or processes data for use by the app. In a nutshell, the application is what gives your gadget or smartphone its special abilities.

It would help if you also realized that your app concept should fall under a distinct category before you file an app pattern. Your app concept, of course, must be unique and unrelated to any others already in existence. An ordinary user shouldn’t be able to duplicate your app’s functionality. Some examples of popular mobile apps are a Calculator and a Chess app.

3. How Do I Know If My Idea Deserves a Patent?

In most cases, the patentability of a mobile application or trademark of an app may be shown. You need to include these three things in your patent application:
An “invention” is required. Patents are often used to safeguard creative works. According to the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), a patent may be awarded for innovation if presented to solve a problem. Since the concept of an app is not tangible, its creation falls within the umbrella of mobile app innovation. However, it is crucial that the technique, like any innovation, solves a problem.

Any potential app concept on patent app examination cost has to be fresh and original: The fact that your concept for a mobile app addresses an issue customers face is no guarantee that it will be granted a patent. Your software concept has to be original and not already in use. Your app concept has not been previously published or otherwise made available to the public in any way, including but not limited to books, pending patent applications, articles, YouTube videos, etc.

Also, it can only be something that’s already been done before. You can’t patent a clone of the Uber app, even if you’ve addressed a problem for thousands of people by creating a smartphone app that allows them to book a trip with only a few clicks.

If it will be considered helpful, it has to meet the following criteria: Finally, your patent has to be deemed practical. But it doesn’t rule out the possibility of developing a fun concept for a mobile app.

This implies that your application has to be viable, at least in principle. The barrier stops developers from protecting less-than-practical software as patents from Custom Software Development Company. Therefore, to lay claim to your application, you must thoroughly and explicitly describe how it functions.


To learn more about the patent process and whether or not you should pursue patent protection for your app concept by mobile app patent route, consult a seasoned software patent attorney. Your lawyer can assist you in filing for a patent. Obtaining a patent for an original and non-obvious innovation is crucial to prevent others from taking advantage of your hard work.


1. How can Concetto Labs help?

It's great that you have a unique idea to be patented. We consider you are now well aware of the whole idea and process of patenting an app idea after reading the blog. If you still have doubts and look for expert guidance, you can reach out to us. Our expert mobile app developers will guide you through the whole procedure based on your unique app idea.

2. What’s next to patenting an app idea?

Suppose you have patented your app idea. What’s next? You would like to turn your brilliant app idea into a successful mobile app. That’s where Concetto Labs comes in. We are a leading mobile app development company having served several clients, big and small, to develop their dream mobile applications. Now suppose you have developed your mobile application with Concetto Labs. Now what? What are the future steps? Launch! Right! And after the launch, you would want millions of people to download and use your application. A good app design can grab people’s attention and a user-friendly experience will keep them stuck to them. As a leading UI/UX design company, we always ensure to design simple and customer-centric interface designs for mobile apps and websites. Hire website designers from us to create stunning websites for your business. Call us at +91 95867 77575 for a free 30-minute consultation.

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Manish Patel

Manish Patel is a Co-Founder of Concetto Labs, a leading mobile app development company specialized in android and iOS app development. We provide a one-stop solution for all IT related services.

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