In reference to the patent application: US20080195499
We found a patent that seems to cover sending and receiving funds via Bitcoin.
I'm curious of how this might affect Bitcoin and existing companies that use it. Namely,
- Is this patent directly related to Bitcoin?
- And if not, could Bitcoin qualify as prior art to this? I know Satoshi published his code in 2008 and this application was filed in 2005.
I'd also like to know, if not to either of those, whether the approval of this application could lead to existing companies having to change their ways.
The abstract reads,
A system for peer-to-peer commerce includes electronic wallets 14 for storing electronic token files 12. The electronic tokens can be passed from wallet to wallet without oversight of a third party. At any time, the owner of a token can verify the validity of a token for a fee, but such verification is not needed to conduct commerce. The electronic tokens include a field which can be used to restrict tokens to a specific purpose or to prevent use on specific goods and services.
And the first claim,
A method of performing commerce over a network comprising:
at a first processing device:
receiving electronic token files having a specified value at a first processing device;
sending an appropriate set of electronic token files over the network to a second processing device in return for a desired good or service;
at a second processing device:
receiving the set of electronic token files from the first processing device over the network; and
optionally verifying the authenticity of one or more of the set of electronic token files.