Hothand's New Mobile Marketing Patent Will Affect More Than Ad Networks & App Developers

Hothand Inc. has been awarded a broad patent, covering not just location services but also mobile advertising. It’s a patent that could affect mobile platforms widely, and not just for ad networks such as Google’s AdMob or the one Apple is rumored to be revealing soon, possibly today.

According to a Mobile Commerce Daily article that quotes a lawyer close to the patent’s development, the patent’s claims are broad. In essence, it covers how to target ads to consumers that have an interest in a particular advertiser, as well as bringing those consumers to the advertiser’s place of business. As the article points out, the potential impact is wide, affecting carriers, ad networks, mobile coupon providers, directories and more. Based on this broadness of coverage, the patent potentially affects development studios, too, namely those whose apps have location-sharing features related to merchants. E.g., Foursquare and MyTown. Here is a portion of the patent’s abstract: