Who would have thought that waking up to Nintendo could be good for you?

We will have to continue waiting patiently for the scientific community to prove the benefits of morning video games, but in the meantime, Nintendo Co Ltd. and Panasonic Corp. are working on a series of devices aimed at improving our quality of life. Joint assignees on two patent applications filed back in February, the September 6th publication of patent applications 15/904,326 and 15/904,321 reveals that the two companies are set on helping their customers both relax and wake up.

The Nintendo/Panasonic application titled “Light Emission Control Device, Electronic Device, and Control Method” (Application No. 15/904,326), describes a light emitter and controller with two specific functions. One function of the device, referred to as the “normal” control, allows a user to instruct the light emitter “to emit light having a [specific] color temperature and luminance.” The alternative “wake-up” control causes the device to emit light of increasing luminance over time to wake up a sleeping user. Complementing the ‘326 application, Nintendo/Panasonic has also filed a patent application titled “Lighting Apparatus, Luminaire, and Electronic Apparatus” (Application No. 15/904/321) which describes a light source capable of receiving environmental information to control the illumination features of the light it emits.

Illuminating the Patent Pathway

Even though Nintendo/Panasonic’s patent applications are just getting started in patent prosecution, USPTO patent data suggests that both of Nintendo/Panasonics’s applications will result in granted patents soon. These two patent applications have not been assigned to the same USPTO patent examiner for evaluation, but, by using the LexisNexis PatentAdvisor® patent analysis platform, we can see that both of the assigned patent examiners in this case have allowed over 90 percent of the patent applications they have reviewed in the past to issue as patents. Additionally, both patent examiners typically conclude examination in under 26 months, making both of Nintendo/Panasonic’s assigned examiners more expeditious than most other USPTO patent examiners. Calculated by a proprietary PatentAdvisor™ algorithm based on the total number of office actions issued by each examiner, the total number of grants issued by each examiner, and each examiner’s work experience, PatentAdvisor predicts a high likelihood of short prosecution lengths and warns against aggressive patent application amendments for the best results.

Tips for the Guidebook

In addition to providing a variety of actionable patent metrics and patent data, PatentAdvisor also offers tailored advice based on the success or failures of past applicants facing the same patent examiners. In Nintendo/Panasonic’s case, the PatentAdvisor Guidebook notes that holding an interview with each assigned patent examiner is likely to result in either immediate allowance or a non-final office action. The Guidebook also encourages Nintendo/Panasonic to resolve patent prosecution without filing an RCE. Historically, Nintendo/Panasonic’s patent examiners have rarely required an RCE before allowance, and these examiners currently have an RCE backlog that includes some cases where RCEs were filed over two years ago and are still awaiting action. Alternatively, the pre-appeal process often causes the Nintendo/Panasonic patent examiners to grant a patent or at least issue a new office action – making appeal a better contingency plan should Nintendo/Panasonic ever need to decide between filing an RCE or for appeal.

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