Patent Issued For Online Shipping Calculation Process

E-tailers trying to focus on distinctive value-add while using as much industry standard functionality as possible have another hurdle, courtesy of the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office.

The USPTO has issued a patent—to be effective Jan. 29—for a method for "real-time calculations of shipping costs for items purchased online using a zip code as a destination location indicator." The patent, which covers calculating such shipments across multiple carriers, and accounts for additional characteristics of the item being shipped, such as weight, special packaging, handling, and insurance costs, according to the company who was awarded the patent, Paid Inc.

The patent was applied for in May 2000 and will be given Patent# 7324968.