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Method for enabling instant message as a complement to existing voice communication

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000180237D
Original Publication Date: 2009-Mar-05
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2009-Mar-05
Document File: 3 page(s) / 33K

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This publication describes a method for enabling instant message as a complement to existing voice communication, by determining a correspondent's identifier, associated instant message provider and address, and conveying messages to the message provider and address determined.

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Method for enabling instant message as a complement to existing voice communication

This publication describes a method for enabling instant message as a complement to existing voice communication. Instant messaging (IM) has become a relied upon communications channel, allowing rapid interchanges that can increase productivity, and enable deep collaboration. It is often called for as a sideband to other communications, e.g., as a complementary communication channel to telephone calls, conference calls, or in person meetings. Initiating an IM session requires that a user either have an existing IM address for an intended recipient, or perform a search to find one. What is needed is a method for easily enabling instant message chat as a complement to existing voice communications.

Consider the following scenario. A first user is on a teleconference with a group of three colleagues, a disappointing turnout since five had accepted the invitation for the call. The first user wants to send a URL to the individuals on the telephone call. Today, the first user can choose to initiate a chat with all the invitees (including the ones that aren't there), or the user can build a chat session with each person individually. If another colleague joins the call later, that colleague is not automatically included in the chat session.

Consider a second scenario. A first user telephones a new contact (or the user may receive a call). The first user wants to share a chart with the other party. The user must now determine the name, the proper spelling, perform a search to determine the other party's email address, enter the address into the IM software, wait for the IM session to accurately display the presence of the other party, and then, after this process, the first user may share the chart.

These scenarios illustrate the desirability of having Instant Messaging capability, coupled with voice calls. A method to enable the use of instant messaging as a complement to existing voice communication consists of the following steps:

1. Determine an identifier associated with at least one voice correspondent of a user
2. Responsive to the identifier, determine at least one instant message provider, and instant message address for said voice correspondent
3. Provide an indication to the user of presence status for said provider/address pair
4. Responsive to receiving an indication of IM message from the user directed to the voice correspondent, provide the message to the provider/address pair

Unified messaging techniques known in the art may be used to determine the identities of "voice correspondents", whether called or calling. Examples of these techniques include: :

     Identification via a personal code/ password entry received as part of the process whereby an individual joins a teleconference.

     Identification via "caller identification (Caller ID)" technology which determines calling line identifiers.

     Identifying speak...