Why you can trust us

Engadget has been testing and reviewing consumer tech since 2004. Our stories may include affiliate links; if you buy something through a link, we may earn a commission. Read more about how we evaluate products.

RIM tries to patent billboards that adjust to roadside traffic

Looks like our pals at Research In Motion are taking the company name literally this week -- they've got a pair of patent applications target ads to automobiles and pedestrians on the street by dynamically changing their information density. By taking a page out of Google's book and measuring the relative position of GPS-equipped phones (or using traditional sensors should that fail), RIM wants to create digital billboards that automatically add details the slower traffic gets. In one example, a "Road House Restaurant" could display only the name and exit number of the joint in giant letters when traffic moves quickly, but pitch that delectable pecan pie more thoroughly when it's stop and go -- but RIM's thinking a bit further than that, suggesting that when vehicles are particularly slow, you could pull out your phone and get a coupon by photographing a projected QR code. The future, ladies and gentlemen.