APPS (AU Published Patent Data Searching)

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APPS (AU Published Patent Data Searching) is a free Australian patent document search system provided by IP Australia. The system hosts "abstracts of all published Australian patent applications filed since 1st January 1975," and "the earlier applications will generally have an abstract prepared by Derwent Information Ltd."[1] According to the "About" section on APPS, "pre-1975 Australian applications going back to 1920 have some bibliographic data on APPS. Usually this is only the application number and IPC classification marks, and hence, this data is generally searchable only on these fields."[1] As of November 2012, this tool no longer appears to be available.

For in-depth searching that includes access to "all Australian patent records dating back to 1904," users should search for Australian patents through AusPat.[2] AusPat is the main patent search system created by IP Australia, and the system includes much broader coverage (PDF) and more available information about individual patent documents than APPS. AusPat lets users "access responses, reports, amendments and search reports via eDossier," while APPS only provides basic bibliographic data and abstracts for the published Australian patent applications. AusPat also allows searching through "28 search fields,"[2] while APPS only has 17 search fields.[1]


Users can search APPS through two different forms:

  • Quick Search: Users can search by "Patent Application Numbers," "Patent Numbers," or words in the title.
  • Advanced Search: Users can search in any of 17 fields by selecting the field through a drop-down menu, selecting an adjacent operator (equals, not equal to, contains, greater than, less than), and inputting the value in a form beside the operator. Users can search through multiple forms, and more forms can be added by selecting the "Add Criteria" button. Users can combine the multiple search terms by AND ("Match ALL of the following")/ OR("Match ANY of the following").

Instructions for formatting search queries within each form and field, descriptions of each field, and available truncation and Boolean operators are all listed under the "Help" link at the top of each page in the search system.

After users conduct a search through either search form, they can view their results list with 10 results per page. Users can browse through their result list using the arrows above the list, or they can select an application number to view the full record of a result. Users can view the separate pages of a result record by using the arrow keys labeled "page," or they can browse through the full record formats of the other results by using the arrows labeled "Doc," situated above the "Page" arrows. Finally, users can select to view a "printer friendly PDF" version of the full record, which includes all pages.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "About." IP Australia website, (link no longer available). Accessed May 6, 2011.
  2. 2.0 2.1 "AusPat." IP Australia website, Accessed May 6, 2011.

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