Did you know that there are three primary types of patents? They are utility patents, design patents, and plant patents.
Utility patents are the ones most commonly sought, and what most people are referring to when they say they have “patented” their invention. Utility patents cover things that function in some way to create a new utility. Mechanical devices, electronics, pharmaceuticals, business processes — essentially anything that can be made or fabricated would be appropriate for a utility patent.
Design patents cover the visual design of the invention — that is, the invention’s visual characteristics or ornamental shape/design. If you have an item that has a unique visual appearance (such as a unique shape or design for a telephone, water glass, computer case, etc.), that unique design can be patented by way of a design patent.
Plant patents, as the name implies, cover unique strains of plants — such as trees, flowers, shrubs, and vegetables.
Knowing the three types of patents will help you as your chart your course on the invention patent waters. Other articles here on my Web site will give you the information you need to write and submit your patent application. As always, glad to help!