More news from Poynt today; the location-based marketing service won a major patent from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on “delivering location-based offers and coupons to mobile smartphones based on GPS location and user profile.”
The patent, originally claimed in 2000, sounds like a pretty wide-reaching patent, and Poynt certainly seems to think it is. In a press release, the company called the patent “an important protective feature and barrier to entry for competitors of the company’s location-based search model.”
“The services surrounding this patent have been, and will continue to be, a key revenue driver for the company,” said Poynt CEO Andrew Osis, in the press release. “With more and more mobile consumers turning to their smartphones for timely information based on where they are and what they are searching for at that moment in time, we expect Poynt will have a rapidly growing audience of new and existing users that will benefit from location-specific advertising and coupons.”
To be honest, I was shocked at how far-reaching this patent was. The wording seems to imply that no other companies will be able to launch a service that sends marketing materials to a phone based on GPS technology and a profile — which is a pretty broad set of circumstances. I’m sure it’s great for Poynt, but it certainly seems anti-competitive.