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Facilitating printer location and transfer of documents from Smartphone to printers via augmented reality

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000200838D
Publication Date: 2010-Oct-27
Document File: 2 page(s) / 67K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

The current approaches of printing from a Smartphone (mobile communications device) to a printer provide a similar user experience as their desktop counterparts. However, they haven't exploited the multimedia capabilities of the Smartphone to provide a more intuitive and easy-to-use printing experience. Current mobile print methods (print from smart phone) are time consuming and not easy to use. The problems include; locating a participating/authorized device directly via Bluetooth / WiFi / indirectly via maps, and locating and transferring the document to the print device. The present idea proposes a system whereby the Smartphone user presses the print button and is presented with an augmented reality overview with real-time video of the current scene, as observed with the smartphone. When a printer appears in the video screen and is identified, a highlighted green box (or any other icon) appears on the video screen coincident with the printer image. The user then clicks the green box to print his/her documents on this printer. This approach utilizes the embedded camera and video capture capabilities of smartphones to enable the "what you see is what you use" experience for users. The whole printing process is intuitive and straightforward: (1) select (what you want to print), (2) point (your smartphone at the destination printer), (3) click (the green box) and (4) collect (the printouts), as shown in the figure below.

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Facilitating printer location and transfer of documents from Smartphone to printers via augmented reality

The current approaches of printing from a Smartphone (mobile communications device) to a printer provide a similar user experience as their desktop counterparts.  However, they haven't exploited the multimedia capabilities of the Smartphone to provide a more intuitive and easy-to-use printing experience. Current mobile print methods (print from smart phone) are time consuming and not easy to use.  The problems include; locating a participating/authorized device directly via Bluetooth / WiFi / indirectly via maps, and locating and transferring the document to the print device. The present idea proposes a system whereby the Smartphone user presses the print button and is presented with an augmented reality overview with real-time video of the current scene, as observed with the smartphone. When a printer appears in the video screen and is identified, a highlighted green box (or any other icon) appears on the video screen coincident with the printer image. The user then clicks the green box to print his/her documents on this printer. This approach utilizes the embedded camera and video capture capabilities of smartphones to enable the "what you see is what you use" experience for users. The whole printing process is intuitive and straightforward: (1) select (what you want to print), (2) point (your smartphone at the destination printer), (3) click (the green box) and (4) collect (the printouts), as shown in the figure below.

This approach utilizes the embedded camera and video capture and display capabilities of smartphones to enable the “what you see is what you use” experience for users.  The whole printing process is intuitive and straightforward:

(1) select (what you want to print)

(2) point (your smartphone at the destination printer)

(3) click (the green box associated with the print device)

(4) collect (the printouts)

Note that between step 3 and step 4, the user document needs to be rendered in a print format appropriate to the print device. This idea does not address how that is accomplished.

The key technical challenge in scope for this proposal is to identify a capable destination printer that appears in the camera screen. Since printers are normally inside buildings, it either cannot obtain GPS coordinates or the GPS coordinates are not accurate. Image recognition software can be used...