Browse Prior Art Database

System and Method of Publishing Location Information to/from Instant Messenger Clients

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000131190D
Publication Date: 2005-Nov-09
Document File: 2 page(s) / 10K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

Currently IM clients show information about your contact, such as their current status {Online, Busy, Do Not Disturb, Extended Away}, which gives users more information about the person they are chatting with. They also give information such as if other users in the chat are currently typing a response.

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LOCATION-BASED INFORMATION FOR IM CLIENTS

System and Method of Publishing Location Information to/from Instant Messenger Clients

Disclosed Anonymously

Currently IM clients show information about your contact, such as their current status {Online, Busy, Do Not Disturb, Extended Away}, which gives users more information about the person they are chatting with. They also give information such as if other users in the chat are currently typing a response.

How can we give users still more information about their contacts?

One way is to provide information about the location of contacts. Some phones already have the ability to report their location, and other phones will soon have this ability. Some phones may even contain a GPS tracking system, which could report their location.

This idea allows an IM client to publish its location to other users.  The position can be displayed to others in several ways:

1) Exact coordinates (GPS coordinates)

2) Mapped to a street

3) Mapped to a city/country

This could be used to keep track of your children's location, friends or co-workers. It could be used to help find a lost person, or determine if any friends are in your neighbourhood so you can meet them for dinner.

The device (A) sends out it's location to the server, and the server posts the location to other devices which have device A as a contact.  Each device has the choice of whether or not it's location is posted and how often it's location is posted. If a device does not support location reporting then the server should be notifi...