Feeds

Google wants to patent mobile commerce

Psychiatric help and vegetables included

A new approach to endpoint data protection

Google owes its success to putting advertising into parts of our lives where no one has ever put adverts before. Now a new patent illustrates the extent of its ambitions.

Last week Google applied to patent one of the cornerstones of mobile commerce - billing by SMS. Details of the invention, entitled "Text message payment", are scant in the application that was published on Thursday. But US 2007/0203836 does, however, illustrate the extent of Google's ambitions. It envisages payments for conventional retail shopping (for example at Starbucks or McDonald's), as well as browser-based surfing, and SMS services such as ringtones.

The invention is, according to the application:

A computer-implemented method of effectuating a payment, comprising: receiving at a computer server system a text message from a payor containing a payment request comprising a payment amount sent by a payor device operating independently of the computer server system; debiting a payor account for an amount corresponding to the amount of the payment request; and crediting a payee account that is independent of the computer server system.

From the accompanying images, Google illustrates how one embodiment of the invention could work:

Google patent application: SMS billing

Which will be familiar to anyone who sells ringtones today. Another attachment illustrates what we presume to be a typical day's shopping for a Google employee:

Google patent application: SMS billing

Although we must note that here, the vegetable seller is also the psychiatrist. So by sharing information, the psychiatrist can remind the mobile punter to eat their vegetables. Presumably, all this information is then relayed to Google's new health initiative.

Google has been briefing potential partners about its mobile phone software platform, as we revealed earlier this year. In June it snapped up Grand Central, a universal mobile messaging start-up.

The idea is to create a mobile platform for Google's core advertising business: think of an OEM-able Sidekick with always-on AdSense. For April 1, we imagined what it would look like, here

7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration

More from The Register

next story
PEAK LANDFILL: Why tablet gloom is good news for Windows users
Sinofsky's hybrid strategy looks dafter than ever
Leaked Windows Phone 8.1 Update specs tease details of Nokia's next mobes
New screen sizes, dual SIMs, voice over LTE, and more
Fiendishly complex password app extension ships for iOS 8
Just slip it in, won't hurt a bit, 1Password makers urge devs
Mozilla keeps its Beard, hopes anti-gay marriage troubles are now over
Plenty on new CEO's todo list – starting with Firefox's slipping grasp
Apple: We'll unleash OS X Yosemite beta on the MASSES on 24 July
Starting today, regular fanbois will be guinea pigs, it tells Reg
Another day, another Firefox: Version 31 is upon us ALREADY
Web devs, Mozilla really wants you to like this one
Secure microkernel that uses maths to be 'bug free' goes open source
Hacker-repelling, drone-protecting code will soon be yours to tweak as you see fit
Cloudy CoreOS Linux distro declares itself production-ready
Lightweight, container-happy Linux gets first Stable release
prev story

Whitepapers

7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
A new approach to endpoint data protection
What is the best way to ensure comprehensive visibility, management, and control of information on both company-owned and employee-owned devices?