Is there a good resource for translating IPC codes into something meaningful? The WIPO site is generally useless: http://www.wipo.int/classifications/ipc/en/

2 Answers 2


Would you care to explain in more detail what you are trying to do? What is your problem with the WIPO website?

When you click on Browse and Search in the WIPO website, you can enter the subclass or subgroup as "current symbol" on the left hand side and then click "go to".

For instance, if you want to know what G06F 3/033 means, you simply enter G06F 3/033 on the left and click "go to". You will then find that the code stands for "Pointing devices displaced or positioned by the user, e.g. mice, trackballs, pens or joysticks; Accessories therefor". Alternatively, you can enter G06F (the subclass), click on "go to", and see the entire list. The WIPO website also offers downloadable PDFs and databases for the IPC symbols and the corresponding definitions in various languages.

What more do you need?


Another very good source for finding the meaning of (IPC) classification(s) and even searching in the classifications to find classes that relate to your subject is the Espacenet site maintained by the European Patent Office. Here you can search the Cooperative Patent Classification (CPC) which has replaced the European Patent Classification (ECLA) and is since Jan 1st 2013 used by both the USPTO and the EPO to classify patent documents. However, this CPC comprises all the IPC classes; thus this site can be used to search IPC also.

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