You are here:

Inventing New Products/Inventions/Cell phone manufactures and development

Advertisement


Question
Hello Mr. Gray,
I have a cell phone idea that has been patented and I'm trying to get in contact with some of the major manufactures of cell phones just to take a look at it to see if it would be compatible with there phones.  The idea itself has to be developed and integrated into the firmware of the cell phone.  My question is are their any major companies that would be interested in signing a NDA just to look at the idea? Also do these companies have contact information like e-mail address or p.o. box addresses that I can send a introduction letter?  I've searched and I can't find this information.  Can you give me those adresses?  Thank you for answering all of my questions can't wait to hear from you.
Thanks again,
Katrina

Answer
Hi Katrina, we get this question from many of our clients that are developing a new concept, but intend to sell it off to a larger company already serving the market. Unfortunately there is no easy answer for you: all companies are set up a little bit differently for receiving product ideas from the public. Some don't (officially at least) take ideas from the public at all.

What I would try to do is to identify the companies you want to target, and then learn as much as you can about how they are organized. You are going to want to present the idea to senior level executives, which means you should plan on presenting a very well polished concept and proposal for business arrangement. From my experience, you want to start with a marketing director or VP of marketing: they will be accustomed to thinking about how new concepts work for their customer base. Hopefully they can get others interested internally as well. See if you can determine who the right targets are by snooping around on LinkedIn, and looking at marketing press releases from the target company: see who wrote the press releases. They may not be the right individual, but will likely work in the right group within the company.

You may find that bigger companies are not willing to sign your NDA, although if your concept is protected (patented), you should not need an NDA right? NDA's can be a big turn off for large companies: you might be better off not requiring an NDA if you feel your patent does indeed protect your concept. Make sure your actual patent is in place, not just a provisional patent application or a pending application.

One thing you might consider is working with a licensing specialist. These are people that take a fee (or percentage) for finding a licensee for products / concepts / etc. They often have good industry connections, and a track record that gives them credibility when approaching large companies.

I hope this info is helpful to you. What you are about to do is challenging, and is going to take a combination of detective work, persistence, and salesmanship on your part. Best of luck to you!

Ryan Gray
Managing Partner
SGW Designworks, LLC

Inventing New Products/Inventions

All Answers


Answers by Expert:


Ask Experts

Volunteer


Ryan Gray

Expertise

I would like to field questions that relate to the process of designing and developing new manufactured products. I have strong experience in product design, product development, product engineering, manufacturing, project management of product development projects, and feasibility analysis of concepts.

Experience

I have worked for fortune 500 business in new product development (NPD) roles, and also am co-founder of a business that is focused on helping businesses develop new products. This means I understand the business context of product development as well as the technical resources required to get a concept through design, prototyping, design for manufacture, and cost optimization.

Organizations
Kickstand Idaho: Board of Directors

Publications
"The Lean Startup" by Eric Ries

Education/Credentials
Oregon State University: BS Wood / Fiber Science Wharton School of Business: Executive Education

Awards and Honors
"Spirit of Continuing Innovation Award" from TechHelp Idaho, a NIST Manufacturing Extension Partnership, April 2013.

Past/Present Clients
TechHelp www.techhelp.org L & H Industrial www.lnh.net LiFoam Industries www.lifoam.com WMD Tech www.wmdtech.com JLS Automation www.jlsautomation.com Weyerhaeuser www.weyerhaeuser.com 2A Armament www.2a-arms.com FAMCO www.famcomfg.com Ear Hero www.earhero.com ATTCO, Inc www.skyhookmfr.com Eberlestock www.eberlestock.com Global Mining Equipment www.globalmining-equipment.com Promoto Billet / Fastway www.promotobillet.com Battle Sports Science battlesportsscience.com Alpha Scooter and Skate alphascoot.com Meyer Industries www.rodenator.com Sloan Security Group www.sloansg.com Loon Outdoors www.loonoutdoors.com U-Grokit www.ugrokit.com Miltech www.miltechcenter.org Boice Box Pedal Boards boiceboxpedalboards.com Motive Power www.motivepower-wabtec.com

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.