Amazon Patents Digital Cash for à la Carte Cloud Computing

Pay-as-you-go with Bitcoin or another digital currency.

Mitch Wagner, Executive Editor, Light Reading

May 29, 2014

2 Min Read
Amazon Patents Digital Cash for à la Carte Cloud Computing

Amazon won a patent for allowing customers to pay for cloud services with Bitcoin or other digital currency, opening the door for anonymous, pay-as-you-go cloud computing, according to a report.

Patent 8,719,131, filed March 21, covers a system for paying for computing resources in a multi-tenant environment. Resources could be allocated anonymously -- not be associated with a specific user account, according to CoinDesk, a digital currency news site. Users would submit the payment as part of the request for resources. (See Amazon Awarded Bitcoin-Related Cloud Computing Patent.)

  • Speed is essential, for example, as a user might request access to a server for just two hours and pay for it digitally.

    The patent could be described as enabling an "à la carte" approach to cloud computing -- take what you need for as long as you need it, with no subscription or long-term obligation, no need to plan ahead. Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN), which runs the largest cloud service in the world, isn't presently interested in digital currencies; payments head Tom Taylor said in April the company has no immediate plans to "engage Bitcoin," CoinDesk says.

The only uses I can think of for this service are illegal. That's not necessarily a bad thing; illegal services include both malware (bad) and anonymous communications hidden from the prying eyes of dictatorships (good).

In other Bitcoin news, Dish Network LLC (Nasdaq: DISH) announced today it will start accepting Bitcoin payment. (See Dish Says Yes to Bitcoin.)

— Mitch Wagner, Circle me on Google+ Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profileFollow me on Facebook, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading. Got a tip about SDN or NFV? Send it to [email protected].

Want to learn more about SDN and the transport network? Check out the agenda for Light Reading's Big Telecom Event (BTE), which will take place on June 17 and 18 at the Sheraton Chicago Hotel and Towers. The event combines the educational power of interactive conference sessions devised and hosted by Heavy Reading's experienced industry analysts with multi-vendor interoperability and proof-of-concept networking and application showcases. For more on the event, the topics, and the stellar service provider speaker lineup, see Telecommunication Luminaries to Discuss the Hottest Industry Trends at Light Reading's Big Telecom Event in June.

About the Author(s)

Mitch Wagner

Executive Editor, Light Reading

San Diego-based Mitch Wagner is many things. As well as being "our guy" on the West Coast (of the US, not Scotland, or anywhere else with indifferent meteorological conditions), he's a husband (to his wife), dissatisfied Democrat, American (so he could be President some day), nonobservant Jew, and science fiction fan. Not necessarily in that order.

He's also one half of a special duo, along with Minnie, who is the co-habitor of the West Coast Bureau and Light Reading's primary chewer of sticks, though she is not the only one on the team who regularly munches on bark.

Wagner, whose previous positions include Editor-in-Chief at Internet Evolution and Executive Editor at InformationWeek, will be responsible for tracking and reporting on developments in Silicon Valley and other US West Coast hotspots of communications technology innovation.

Beats: Software-defined networking (SDN), network functions virtualization (NFV), IP networking, and colored foods (such as 'green rice').

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