A phrase often seen on various devices that legally, doesn't mean anything
. Basically, the manufacturer is claiming they have submitted a patent request
to the Patent Office and is awaiting the result. During this time, there is no patent to enforce, so someone may actually go and copy the design. However, if the patent is granted, someone can become liable for patent infringement
for activities after the patent was granted.
So what is the point of putting the phrase on an item? Technically it can be construed as a warning of a possible impending patent, to dissuade anyone from trying to copy the design. However, when I see the phrase on cardboard file folders, it seems to be more of a marketing tactic than anything else.