Google has apparently filed an application for a system that allows bandwidth provider to bid on phone calls:
Googleâ€™s patent is called â€œFlexible Communication Systems and Methodsâ€ and the abstract says:
â€œA method of initiating a telecommunication session for a communication device include submitting to one or more telecommunication carriers a proposal for a telecommunication session, receiving from at least one of the one or more of telecommunication carriers a bid to carry the telecommunications session, and automatically selecting one of the telecommunications carriers from the carriers submitting a bid, and initiating the telecommunication session through the selected telecommunication carrier.â€
Read the full patent here
The thing I find interesting about this is that I invented a similar technique in 1997, motivated by the desire to get bandwidth-on-demand for video conferences. If this is granted, it certainly won’t survive a court challenge.
I’ll post some details on my invention, which was never patented, shortly.