You’re probably aware of the never ending IP battles between Apple, Samsung and other tech giants.
They can afford to settle billion dollar lawsuits. You can’t.
You need to make sure that your supplier don’t install software from other companies, or use components that require licensing. More on that later.
You can’t expect your Shenzhen manufacturer or understand, or even care about, IP issues. It’s up to you to keep track of the bill of materials and make sure they don’t install commercial software that requires paid licenses. Or, use components that require a paid license.
Further, product design can also be patented. While a fitness tracker or smart watch can only look in a certain way, you must avoid design elements that are unique to certain brands.
Android OS, Apple MFi & Technology Licensing
Almost all ODM and OEM wearables manufactured in China come with Android installed. Android OS is free, so you don’t need to pay any licensing fee to Google for using it.
However, this doesn’t extend to certain apps.
Further, you must also pay licensing fees for certain components.
Co-founder of Asiaimportal (HK) Limited and based in Hong Kong. He has been quoted in and contributed to Bloomberg, SCMP, Alibaba Insights, Globalsources.com, China Chief Executive, Quartz Magazine and more.
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