March 27, 2006 11:08 AM PST

Google employees' wireless patents published

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has published three wireless-related patents filed by Google employees as the search giant seeks to delve deeper into the wireless market.

The patent applications, filed by Google employees Wesley Chan, Shioupyn Shen and former Google product management director Georges Harik, propose lowering the cost of wireless access by offsetting the costs via advertisements on the service. Google, which receives the bulk of its revenue from advertisers, is seeking to expand its potential advertising base by moving further into the wireless market.

The patent applications, filed in 2004 and published earlier this month, address three issues related to the wireless and advertising market.

Patent application No. 20060058019 seeks to develop a system for dynamically modifying the appearance of browser screens on a client device when connecting to a wireless access point. Under the patent, the browser's appearance would be modified to reflect the brand associated with the wireless access-point provider.

The patent application says that Wi-Fi Internet access would be provided freely to customers in exchange for their agreement to receiving ads on their devices.

Google, however, noted its patent applications do not represent a guarantee it will head in a particular direction with its technology.

"Like many companies, we file patent applications on a variety of ideas that our employees may come up with. Some of those ideas later mature into real products or services; some don't," a company representative said. "Prospective product announcements should not be inferred from our patent applications."

The two other patent applications, No. 20060059044 and No. 20060059043, cover ads based on wireless access points and wireless access at a reduced rate, respectively.

"The gap between what Wi-Fi operators charge and what casual mobile users are typically willing to pay is relatively significant," according to the patent applications. "Therefore, Wi-Fi Internet access as an industry has experienced a rather slow start."

See more CNET content tagged:
patent, Google Inc., access point, Internet access, Wi-Fi

5 comments

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Misleading article title
The title of this story "Google employees win wireless patents" is misleading. Filing a patent application is very different than having the said application granted. This is like having a news story entitled "Local man wins lottery jackpot" about a guy who bought a lottery ticket at the corner market...
Posted by jerryjliu (1 comment )
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You are so very right, but what else do you expect
You are so very correct in highlighting this amazing error by news.com
To call a patent filed patent granted is "patently absurd"!
But what else do you expect from News.com and rest of the Big media that have done everything in their power to Hype Google & then Yahoo as some sort of innovators, and good for people, when they are anything buy innovators or good for people.
Posted by Manfred Levy (24 comments )
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So Really,
This is just a patent for spam?!?
Posted by Marcus Westrup (630 comments )
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That is what passes as innovation now a days!
Amazing, once patents were about invetions!
Now patents are about how to better SPAM people by sending Ads to lower cost of wireless!
As if wireless costs much to begin with.
Posted by Manfred Levy (24 comments )
Link Flag
Wi-Fi is a smart extention as a provider; I feel the Voip plug-in is key.
Obviously, this has less impact than a municipal contract at the local airport or even main line carriers would aspire to in added security.
Posted by Pop4 (88 comments )
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