When you work for a company as large as RIM, a lot of patents get filed that aren’t necessarily part of the company’s business, but more part of its process. It’s also a great way to keep an inflated legal department busy during a lull in leak season.
The latest patents to come out of RIM relate to billboard advertising. RIM has applied for two patents titled an “Adaptive roadside billboard system and related methods” and “Adaptive pedestrian billboard system and related methods”. The idea is that the billboard advertising can make use of crowd-sourced data from RIM to serve ads more effectively. As more pedestrians pass an advertisement, the message might be made simpler to accommodate the influx of people. The same applies to cars: if traffic is slower, more detailed advertisements could be served.
What’s important to take from this patent is that RIM sees value in the location-based data that the platform provides. Advertising may seem like a bit of a leap as a revenue source for RIM, but it’s just the beginning in terms of using location data for to push innovation.