Tag: Google

IP Protection: Strategy vs. Company Culture

Intellectual property underpins tech innovation. By protecting ideas, unique technology and processes, creativity and innovation can grow. Patents are the fundamental safety net for both tech start-ups and established players.

Concepts can move past the ideas stage and the industry can create unique products and services to benefit consumers and society.

At Prevayl®, our approach to IP protection is fundamental to our business strategy. Understanding and awareness surrounding IP is also a key pillar of our company culture, underpinning how we work as a business.

The question for many businesses, is why the importance of company culture when it comes to IP protection?

The Sonos conundrum

IP protection and company culture has been highlighted by the recent news of Sonos’ claim against Google for patent infringement relating to their speakers.

The two companies have a collaborative relationship.

For Sonos, the collaboration went too far when in 2013, their Execs handed over the blueprints for their speakers to Google when working together to incorporate Google’s music service directly into the speakers.

The lawsuit relates to Google’s subsequent speaker products, with Sonos alleging these infringe their patents.

Striking the right balance

“Start-ups with a clear IP strategy can be more creative and agile in protecting their ideas. This ultimately gives them an intellectual property currency in technology segments.” David Newns, Prevayl Co-Founder and Strategic Advisor.  

This is essential for all tech start-ups. Without it, there is no opportunity to grow, innovate and ultimately bring products to market. That’s the first step.

David got to the crux of the matter when he said: “Companies big and small need to rethink their internal culture to IP.”

This is where many businesses continue to fall down. The importance of intellectual property simply has to be ingrained into all levels of a business, from start-ups to major industry players.

Forgetting this and taking a collaborative relationship too far, clearly can have consequences.

Prevayl’s approach to IP

At Prevayl we’ve invested in our approach to IP and made it a fundamental aspect of our business strategy from the outset.

We have an in-house team that began filing patent applications from day one. This continues daily, providing our team with the safety net to protect our ideas and ensure innovation can drive our products and business forward.

We’ve also made sure that it permeates into every layer of our business. Our IP team collaborate with all departments within the company from idea stage, right through to conception and delivery. Everything is protected.

Knowledge sharing, collaboration and protection within our business ensures every team member knows the importance of IP and understands the value of their ideas.

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Hardware is Hard

It’s a common phrase often seen in headlines to show the latest tech flop. While there is some truth behind the myth. Often there are number of reasons why start-ups building hardware fail; from team alignment to poor market position, hands-off manufacturing to dreaded ‘feature creep’.

Hardware start-ups are expanding; global hardware accelerator HAX knows this better than anyone and details the latest trends in its yearly report. TechCrunch recently reported on HAX’s findings. The report highlighted several vital insights: hardware companies are increasingly entering the public market, and more privately-held hardware startups are exceeding a valuation of $1 billion. Of those unicorns, more than 50% are Chinese hardware companies. Google’s recent acquisition of FitBit is the latest in a long line of acquisitions that focus on hardware (Nest Labs, Dropcam, Motorola Mobility, HTC talent).

Developing an end-to-end system and designing our hardware in house keeps Prevayl® ahead of the competition. We aren’t at the mercy of existing platforms; we aren’t limited by other manufacturer’s devices which are often built upon outdated legacy designs. Having our own end-to-end platform, with our own ground breaking electronics means that we are in control of a wearer’s data at every stage, and never goes through an unknown third party.

We are designing from the ground up, putting the garment first and seamlessly integrating the electronics with invisibility. Pulling the focus away from the clever technology, and putting the onus on the ease of use for the consumer and the transparency of their data flow.

We are eagerly building out our hardware capability, hiring the best minds in the global wearable electronics’ space, allowing us to design and iterate faster than the competition and bring product to market faster without relying on the limitations of third parties. We are currently expanding our hardware hub here in the UK and are keen to utilise the best that UK manufacturing has to offer. Most importantly we are able to blend hardware, garment and software at the point of inception, rather than building a system that has to align with existing products.

We at Prevayl dispel the myth of hardware and take a slightly different stance

Hardware is different.

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Google and Fitbit: The increased importance of health data

In today’s world data is currency. It’s at the centre of big business buyouts and is the facilitator of the next potential stage of human evolution. Unsurprisingly it’s dominated much of the discussion about recent developments surrounding Google and Fitbit.

For many people data’s a scary concept, but when framed in the context of personalisation it becomes more palatable, acceptable and then for some even desired.

So, why is data so important? It helps us learn more about groups of people and individuals and crucially it helps the provision of a tailored and personalised experience. Personalisation is key and has been the real driving force behind the concept of data as currency.

The desire for personalisation

More than half of consumers demand products that have been personalised for them in some way, while as many as 72% of online users will only engage with ads that are personal and tailored. This is despite 86% being worried about the use of their personal data.

This is where the data conundrum plays out for consumers.

For many there are question marks over why personal data is so important, but it’s their own desires, needs and demands that has driven the trend. Tech giants are using this data collection to gleam better user insights to tailor their offerings and personalise their products in a way that will benefit consumers.

Consumer desire has effectively created the market itself. Yet questions still remain, and data often becomes an unnecessarily negative buzzword.

This balance between data concern and data desire is currently being played out with the recent buyout of Fitbit by Google.

The detail is in the data

As soon as the deal was first announced, questions were being asked and both parties were quick to address the issue.

Users will have control over their data, data collection will always be transparent, personal information won’t be sold, and health and wellness data won’t be used for Google ads.

There’s been plenty of media hype in this area.

What has been ignored in many circles is the potential impact on the healthcare industry. Again this plays into the acceptability and desirability of data being collected.

Google and Fitbit were already working together and announced a partnership in 2018 to bring health and fitness data to doctors and healthcare services. At this time Fitbit’s intention was to use Google Healthcare API to integrate Fitbit data into medical records. This comes on the back of Google’s parent company, Alphabet, running projects under its Verily Life Sciences research organisation facilitating a move into the health-monitoring space.

When we talk about data driving the next stage of human evolution, healthcare insights is set to be the real catalyst in this area. In line with this, the work we’re doing at Prevayl ® is set to drive one of the biggest health trends for 2020 and the coming years; the capability of individuals to take ownership of their own health data.

The importance of the partnership

Google has already been making headway into healthcare, so was the buyout necessary? Could the two have coexisted without the need to come together and raise questions about the use of data?

With this deal, Google gets hardware and software teams with wearable-tech expertise. That immediately brings knowledge of product development for a successful and desirable consumer-focused wearable device. Add this to previous technology that was bought earlier this year and it shows the importance of getting the hardware right, something that Google hasn’t always done.

What they have traditionally always done well is the software, whether that’s the use of machine learning or AI. With the collaboration in this area, the results for the end users will be an even more personalised experience.

Data collection, extrapolation and analysis will fuel personalisation. Fitbit users will just be the beginning.

Personalisation and an insight-driven healthcare experience

At Prevayl, we’re creating the world’s most advanced health-tech ecosystem.

Through the creation of wearable technology that is seamlessly integrated into clothing, we’re providing the opportunity to make wearable clothing ubiquitous. First through the ease and use for the consumer, secondly through the ability to ensure adoption and utilisation by multiple brands and industries.

With the collection of more bio-data from the human body than any current leading wearable device, we’re powering the largest ever known platform of human insights. Data is central to our ability as a healthy insights provider.

This advanced facilitation of data collection doesn’t just promise increased personalisation in the healthcare sector, it offers the opportunity for users to have their own personal curated heath management system.

They have the ability to interact and participate with their own health data and gain pre-emptive healthy insights that will signpost them away from illness and towards better health.

This is the importance of data and individual healthcare insights for the next potential stage in human evolution. 

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