US Patent Reference, Entire String Field (REF)
A reference is a reverse citation. You can search reverse citations by their entire string, including document number and title, using the REF field code.
Used wisely, the REF field can be a money-maker for patent holders (see the examples below).
AcclaimIP has a companion field code (that is sometimes more useful) that only searches the document numbers. This is the REFN field code.
- REF:"touch screen" --> Finds patents that reference other patents that contain the string "touch screen" in their titles.
- REF:"touch screen" NOT TTL:"touch" --> Finds patents that reference other patents that contain the string "touch screen" in their titles, BUT do NOT contain the word "touch" in their own titles.
The second query above is an interesting query and may be exactly what you need to take your patent monetization program to the next level. These are patents that, while referencing touch screen patents, may not, themselves, be touch screen patents. This query often finds potential applications for a technology, and may, therefore, lead to new opportunities for your patents.