Design or model searches are conducted to verify the actual validity of a model i.e. compliance with the novelty and individual character requirements.
Given that the representations are rarely accompanied by an indexed description that allows to narrow the search scope with keywords, model searches are very complex to conduct.
The search can also be limited by narrowing down the field of search to the models filed within a specific class of the Locarno classification of models. However, this often entails evaluating millions of photos in an attempt to trace the model of interest. On the other hand, there is obviously no software efficient enough to automatically compare images and trace all previously registered models that are the identical or similar to the subject of search.
Published patents are also opposable to the validity of the designs or models, hence part of the search can be advantageously carried out by searching the model of interest using keywords in patent databases.
Very often, model searches are conducted by the clients starting from older catalogues of competitor products.
Another valuable search tool consists of way-back machine service which allows to view images of websites, for example of other manufacturers known in the search sector, as they appeared in the past and with reference to given dates.