Using an Alternate Communication Path to Enable a Disabled Communication Device and/or Path
Publication Date: 2016-Aug-23
The IP.com Prior Art Database
Disclosed is a system and method that allows a source device to signal a target device to turn on a particular communication means (e.g., Bluetooth) using an already-enabled communication means (e.g., Wi-Fi). The solution provides a method for enabling each communication means based on immediate need, thus saving mobile device battery life because the functions are not constantly running.
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Using an Alternate Communication Path to Enable a Disabled Communication Device and/
Users must always be mindful of the remaining battery life in a mobile device, such as a smart phone, while it is in use. Although battery technology improves, it barely keeps pace with the ever-increasing device power requirements. As mobile device displays become larger, and exciting new sensor and communication means become embedded and mainstream, consumers must resort to manual tactics to help prolong battery life. One tactic is to manually turn off certain mobile device communication means when not in use, such as Bluetooth* and the Global Positioning System (GPS), and then re-enable the functions as needed.
When a user turns off certain communication means to save power, it is not possible to receive communications along those respective means. The user must be aware of an incoming communication attempt and then manually turn on the respective communication means. This is cumbersome, and can result in the user missing relevant communications.
The novel solution is a system and method that allows a source device to signal a target device to turn on a particular communication means using an already-enabled communication means.
The solution provides a method for enabling a second wireless communication means on a second mobile device upon receipt of a signal transmitted using a first wireless communication means from a first mobile device. The second wireless communication means is different from the first wireless communication means. The method comprises:
• Receiving a wireless control signal at a second mobile device transmitted from a first mobile device using a first wireless communication means;
• Conditionally enabling a second wireless communications means at the second mobile device upon the receipt of said wireless control signal.
The first communication means is an audio output device such as a Wi-Fi radio. The second communication means is mobile personal computing device, such as a Bluetooth radio. A connection between the first mobile device and second device over a second communication means uses a credential passed over the first communication means.
As an example, a user's wireless earbuds support both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. The user's smart phone only has the Wi-Fi radio turned on. The wireless earbuds, when turned on, not only seek proximate Bluetooth devices to couple with, but also send out messages over Wi-Fi to nearby devices. The Wi-Fi messages sent could signal devices to enable an associated Bluetooth radio, if disabled. Perhaps the earbuds support Wi-Fi to couple with streaming music services on a user's local area network,
whereas Bluetooth is preferred for short-distance streaming from a personal mobile device.
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