Paying for things with your cell phone isn't a new concept, but as with most things, it seems to get more interesting when Google does something with it. A patent filed by the search engine outlines a system for distributing money through SMS.
How will it work? Take this scenario directly from the patent application:
the user of [Gpay] may want to send twenty dollars to a friend whose mobile number is 850-555-1212. The user may thus type and send the following text message: gpay 8505551212 20 to the Google text message address of GOOGL (46645), or to another address.
I've been digging around Google for days to see if I could find any traces of this system, but absolutely nothing has come up. There is no word on whether this system is being worked on, is in testing or will ever be released -- for now, it's simply a patent application that was filed 5 months before Google Checkout was even launched.
Here are some images taken from the original patent application for your enjoyment: