There's often one company that holds the most patents to a new technology that ends up collecting a lion's share of royalties. When it comes to newest wireless phone chips, that company is Qualcomm. With next-generation RFID chips, it's Intermec.
I wonder who the main patent holders are where VoIP is concerned. It could very well be that influential patent holders will include not just Internet Protocol giants like Cisco or Nortel, but also some little companies we never heard of before. How many people know of a company called Rates Technology, that's just sued Google for patent infringement? There's also an outfit called Global IP Sounds that licenses technology to Google Talk.