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There are many products which are licensed for non-commercial purposes, either paid, free or opensource.

Assume there is a company testing and prototyping some ideas of new products. This does not directly generate revenue, and will not be part of the final product. But the knowledge gained through this experiments will end up in a product.

Does this research stage count as commercial usage?

  • Is there any reason the company is engaging in the activity other than to potentially make money from the knowledge gained? Separately, what area of law are you expecting "commercial usage" to be an issue? – George White Jul 18 at 19:39
  • The scenario was more on the idea of experimenting, to check if the project is feasible. From the knowledge, yes, money may be made, but the strict usage of the product can be interpreted as research. Also, there is no guarantee that money will be made, since the idea might prove unfeasible. The question was asking more for an understanding of the term "commercial usage" used in licensing, rather than a concrete situation. Is any use of a product in a company qualified as commercial usage? Even if is just some internal testing? – Paul92 Jul 18 at 20:22
  • Yes, the research might or might work out. My question pointed to the fact, I assume, that any all activity you are talking about has its ultimate end in making money. If not, the company would not engage in it. It is research to make a buck, not for a charitable or pure academic purpose. – George White Jul 18 at 20:51
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    Note that open source licenses do not distinguish between commercial and non-commercial use. Where a software is “open source for non-commercial use” that usually means “you can have this open source license, but if you want to include it in your proprietary software you'll likely want our commercial license”. – amon Jul 18 at 21:37

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