Inventors often fear that others may steal their ideas, but often, they don’t do the legwork to confirm that their ideas are, in fact, original. If there is a clear problem to be solved, it may be highly likely that it has been thought of before. A visit to your local mall, hardware store, office supply center, etc. may reveal that there are products already in that space as you can read from https://fingerlakes1.com/2021/07/08/team-up-with-inventhelp-to-take-your-career-to-the-next-level/. This is actually to be expected. Think for a minute about a common problem, messy computer cords.
As I sit here in front of my PC, there is a rat’s nest of computer cords unattractively draped behind my desk. I’m well aware that there are a multitude of products that could be a solution. I can visit any computer/electronics store and find several products to address this problem. I can go to Google, Yahoo, or Bing and type in “messy cords” and find products. If I go online and do a patent search, I will find, again, numerous patents filed for various solutions.
Messy cords is an almost universal problem for anyone with a computer or AV equipment, so that there are bound to be many possible solutions and products. At some point in the invention process, the inventor or designer needs to access whether their idea is truly original and worthwhile pursuing.
This is where the urge to be secretive can backfire. They may rush to patent their idea, convinced it is unique, and guided by professionals who want to bill the average $10,000 to $30,000 that it costs to patent a new product, they may not be adequately informed. An expert in the industry would quickly be able to tell them that this product is not unique enough or lacking features that would distinguish it from the competition. You can get help from patent agencies like InventHelp.
A little competitive research does not have to be the death knell for a new product, however, it can actually be the start of further development, creating a product that can be licensed. Once you are aware of what is out in the marketplace, how can you make your product better? Increase the benefits? Make it easier? Faster? Save time or money for the user? Originality is an important quest in product development, make certain that you invest sufficient time and energy in it.