EP0875112A1 - A method and a means for performing a service via an interactive telecommunication network - Google PatentsA method and a means for performing a service via an interactive telecommunication network
- Publication number
- EP0875112A1 EP0875112A1 EP19970902764 EP97902764A EP0875112A1 EP 0875112 A1 EP0875112 A1 EP 0875112A1 EP 19970902764 EP19970902764 EP 19970902764 EP 97902764 A EP97902764 A EP 97902764A EP 0875112 A1 EP0875112 A1 EP 0875112A1
- Grant status
- Patent type
- Prior art keywords
- Prior art date
- Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
- G07F—COIN-FREED OR LIKE APPARATUS
- G07F17/00—Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services
- G07F17/32—Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services for games, toys, sports or amusements, e.g. casino games, online gambling or betting
- H04—ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
- H04M—TELEPHONIC COMMUNICATION
- H04M11/00—Telephonic communication systems adapted for combination with other electrical systems
- H04—ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
- H04N—PICTORIAL COMMUNICATION, e.g. TELEVISION
- H04N7/00—Television systems
- H04N7/08—Systems for the simultaneous or sequential transmission of more than one television signal, e.g. additional information signals, the signals occupying wholly or partially the same frequency band, e.g. by time division
- H04N7/087—Systems for the simultaneous or sequential transmission of more than one television signal, e.g. additional information signals, the signals occupying wholly or partially the same frequency band, e.g. by time division with signal insertion during the vertical blanking interval only
- H04N7/088—Systems for the simultaneous or sequential transmission of more than one television signal, e.g. additional information signals, the signals occupying wholly or partially the same frequency band, e.g. by time division with signal insertion during the vertical blanking interval only the inserted signal being digital
- H04N7/0882—Systems for the simultaneous or sequential transmission of more than one television signal, e.g. additional information signals, the signals occupying wholly or partially the same frequency band, e.g. by time division with signal insertion during the vertical blanking interval only the inserted signal being digital for the transmission of character code signals, e.g. for teletext
A METHOD AND A MEANS FOR PERFORMING A SERVICE VIA AN INTER¬ ACTIVE TELECOMMUNICATION NETWORK.
The present invention relates to a method for taking part in a game via a telecommunication network. The invention also relates to a new central unit adapt¬ ed to carry out the above method.
Interactive telecommunication systems in which the user by means of a television set may participate in different activities are earlier known. As an example of the prior art it is referred to the US patent No. 5.404.393 from which a method and an apparatus for accomplishing an interactive television connection using menu-windows are earlier known.
However, methods or systems which allow prosecution of a binding participation in a game, and in particular in a game about money via interactive telecommunication systems are not earlier known.
The object of the present invention is in first hand to provide a method and a central unit which make it possible for players to participate in a binding or obligating way in games, and in particular to take part in gambling games in which the player shall play for a specific amount or stake, via a telecommunication network.
Further it may be said that an object of the present invention is to provide a method and a system according to which a binding participation in a game about money may be fulfilled substantially by means of existing telecommuni¬ cation links which are interconnected in a new central unit or gambling station which also comprises connections to at least one bank and at least one public bookmaker and where the gambling station also ensures and takes care of the authentication, both by checking the identity of the parti¬ cipants and the bank account coverage and by producing and taking care of receipts for games that are fulfilled. To meet the above objects a central unit has been developed in connection with this invention, which central unit also is referred to as the gambling station, and this gambling station is connected to a telecommunication network via suitable interfaces, while the gambling station accom¬ plishes the etablishing of connections with calling players, checks the players identification codes, checks the players coverage in associated bank accounts, collects relevant information about the desired game, transmitts game signals and game instructions to and from the players on an indi¬ vidual base, and produces and stores receipts for games that are completed.
The gambling station according to the present invention is adapted to establish, partly one-way, partly two-way com¬ munications via a telecommunication network such as the public telephone network, direct transmission lines and television links. The gambling station according to the present invention is also provided with suitable interfaces to establish two-way connections with banks and public bookmakers such as national lotteries, public gambling authorities etc. (in Norway e.g. Norsk Rikstoto, Norsk Tipping etc. ) .
The gambling station according to the present invention is construed to function as one among several commision agents for different games about money being practical at any time period. To give a more clear understanding of the invention it is referred to the detailed description of some embodiments given below, and to the accompanying drawings in which: Fig. 1 illustrates the structure of a telecommunication network which makes it possible to participate in games about money, directly via a telecommunica¬ tion network, and Fig. 2 illustrates in more detail the functional units which may be included in a gambling station 6, which is the main part of Fig. 2. It is emphasized that the reference numbers used in both figures are identical when applicable. Similarly it should be pointed out that the shown embodiments are not meant to be limiting examples of the present invention which may be implemented in many different ways not explicitly shown in the embodiments. Finally it should be mentioned that earlier developed details and prior art technique assumed known within this art and relating to interactive telecommunication systems, are not shown in the figures to avoid unnecessary complex examples. Thus, a lot of details and techniques earlier known in connection with interactive telecommunication systems may also be included in the system without extending the scope of the present invention.
In Fig. 1 it is shown that the equipment which may be present at any player 1 may comprise a telephone instrument, a television set having teletext facilities, and possibly a personal computer 7. It should already be pointed out that in the simplest embodiment of the invention the player only has a key telephone set which will be sufficient to make use of the invention. In Fig. 1 a television station 2 is also shown. Although the figure assumes that the signal trans- mission is accomplished as a wireless transmission, this is not a limitation as the connection from the television transmitter to the television receiver also may be a cable connection. The bank 3 on the figure may be an existing public bank or one specific game bank establised for the players and in which all the accounts are game accounts established for people taking part in this type of inter¬ active gambling. The bank 3 then possibly may be a bank in which each single player has made an advance deposit for which he want to play, and where each player has been as- sociated to a member or account number or any other type of registration number which may be linked to his account number. On the figure it is also shown two "public bookmaker companies" , as in this example a national Football pools company 4 (in Norway: Norsk Tipping) and a public Totalisa- tor board 5 (in Norway: Norsk Rikstoto) .
When the system units shown in Figure 1 are considered, the following details may also be mentioned:
1. The caller/player
The player need to have a telephone apparatus and possibly also a television set, preferably with facilities for tele¬ text. The player establishes an account in a bank. This account may freely be used by the account-holder by means of a PIN-code transmitted to the direct game central (DC) . The player may also use a personal computer such as PC 7, but this feature is not absolutely required.
2. Television station
One or more television stations having interactive teletext facilities.
3. Bank One (or more) bank(s) in which the player deposite a game account. 4. Football pools (in Norway: Norsk Tipping)
With a system according to the present invention the player may interactively take part in the different games for money in the Norwegian football pools, which includes several money games, such as totalisator games, betting and lotter¬ ies (in Norway: Lotto, Vikinglotto, Fotballtipping, Oddsen etc. ) .
5. Norwegian horse races
With this system the player may interactively take part in all money games under Norwegian horse racing (Norsk Riks- toto) , which includes many different games (V75, V5, Dagens Dobbel, Vinner, Trippel etc.) .
6. D.S. (Direct play central) .
The D.S. -company is meant to be the "interactive representa- tive (commision agent)". In this company one will find central unit which "treats" the sound signals and possibly also the teletext pictures which the player needs for his playing operation. The central unit (DS) makes contact with all the system units (from 1-5 on Fig. 1) and checks that everything is handled correctly. The D.S. unit registers and copies all the transactions and also the sounds/pictures/- coupons.
All the units are connected to the gambling central 6, also referred to as the direct play central (DC) or central unit, via the telecommunication lines which preferably are directly established digital lines with an established connection preferably via suitable coaxial cables or glas fibre cables giving a high security against tapping and disturbances interfering with the transactions or the games. These connections or links are assumed on the figure, how¬ ever, without any specific reference numbers. On the figure it is only referred to one single player and he has been provided with a telephone, a television set including tele¬ text facilities and also a personal computer. It should, however, be emphasized that a large number of players may be handled simultaneously and the players may be connected to the central unit in different manners and may also have different types of sofisticated equipment accessible. A minimum requirement is that each player must have possibi- lity for telephone contact with the DC central unit and accordingly he must have a telephone instrument or a mobile telephone. However, both a TV-set and a personal computer are options which not necessarily has to be met.
The players usage of the system is shown in the below example describing the procedure. 1. The player makes a call to the central unit or tele¬ phone number (usual tax or additional tax) .
2. The player is asked, from the gambling central 6, to give his bank account number and thereafter he is asked to give his 4-numbers PIN-code. If the account number or the PIN-code is erroneous, the player has two new possibilities. If all three repetitions are wrongly dialed the bank is informed from DC central unit and the account is closed until the account-holder takes personal contact. If, how¬ ever, the number is correctly dialed, a new teletext page informing about the saldo and other details is presented to the player.
3. If teletext is desired and accessible, the DC central unit search (through a specific system not shown) after an accessible television channel, and on this channel a search is made after an unoccupied teletext page. If no teletext pages are accessible, the game may be fulfilled via the sound channel only.
4. By using the teletext-system the player is informed via his unique teletext page having a DS-logo, and a page in- eluding a main menu which (in its first version) comprises the following text: Press 1 for game 1 (Lotto), press 2 for football pools, press 3 for numbers game (Oddsen) or press 4 for horse racing, and 5 for information. The player then selects a game as desired, e.g. a numbers game (Lotto) . The DS central unit gives the player the relevant pieces of information related to the selected game.
5. The player is asked to complete his coupon (or forcast) via the phone. All keys depressed are shown on his specific teletext screen and at the same time the values may be heard via the phone. If a key is pressed erroneously corrections are made e.g. by depressing one specific key as the *-key.
6. Once the coupon is finished, the transaction is com¬ pleted by depressing one specific key, such as the #-key. Thereafter the completed coupon is shown on the teletext screen (if viable) and is also repeated via the phone con¬ nection. The DS central unit checks that the account has sufficient coverage and that the coupon is accepted. If everything is OK the player may accept the game by e.g. depressing the *-key once more, whereupon the coupon is registered and gets a unique identification number which also is the receipt number for the player. The coupon with this ID-number is copied and transmitted to the correct address, which e.g. may be the player, a public gambling company, a bank, an internal separate system or other re¬ ceivers. The bank at once debits the amount at stake from the player's account, and the bank also performs the trans- mittal of the coupon with the receipt number. The player can read his receipt number on his teletext screen and is asked whether he want to go on with other games or make more coupons. If the player want to end the transaction the transiever is simply hooked. If the player want to continue the main menu is repeated e.g. as the player depress his #- key, but if he shall only play a new coupon in the same game he may wait without making any new key pressures. The cou¬ pon, the transaction and the receipt number are registered and stored e.g. at the DC central unit, a public bookmaker and/or the bank. The coupon and the receipt number may be stored by a gambling firm which e.g. may be a national lottery or a bookmaker (in Norway: Norsk Tipping or Norsk Rikstoto) . The same procedure may be followed without any teletext use, only with sound facility. This may in parti¬ cular be the case if the player stays at a location without television (in car, abroad etc.), without teletext acces¬ sible or in situations where all the teletext pages are occupied. In Fig. 2 a more complete structure of the functional blocks which are to be included in the gambling central 6 from Fig. l, is shown.
First of all it should be noted that the players 1, of whom only one having the reference number 1, is shown on Fig. 2, may be provided with different units on their indi¬ vidual locations. Thus, the player 1 on Fig. 2 has been shown with a television set 32, a telephone instrument 38 as well as a personal computer 7, while other players may be provided only with a telephone instrument 33 and a tele- vision set 32, while still other players may be provided with a telephone 33 only, and this telephone may be a usual key phone or a mobile telephone set. With the present tech¬ nique it is implisitly understood that the complete tele¬ communication function may be implemented within a personal computer, such as PC 7 on the figure. On top of Fig. 2 the remaining parts of the external network are shown with the same reference numbers as used on Fig. 1, and these parts therefore will not be explained in any detail here. It should, however, briefly be mentioned that the direct game central or gambling station 6 is con- nected to one or more television stations 2, one or more banks 3 and one or more public bookmakers 4,5, e.g. via the public telecommunication network. Below the function blocks comprised in the direct game central 6 will be explained in more detail. The most important units within the gambling station 6 are the audio unit 10, the communication exchange 11, the bank unit 12 and the game unit 13. These units or circuitry implementing their functions have to be present if the gambling station 6 shall work as assumed. The communication exchange 11 receivs, evaluates, converts, and formats and finally transmits all signals used by the gambling station 6, both when internal communication and external communi¬ cation are considered.
A short presentation of the remaining function blocks included in the gambling station 6 will be given before the function is explained. The audio unit 10 is connected to a function block 14 which is activated when audio signals are to be used together with a teletext transmission. This block may be referred to as audio with teletext (TTV) . The audio unit 10 is in addition connected to a separate audio unit which only is activated when a phone is used alone. This functional block is referred to as 16 and is denoted as audio for telephone.
Below the communication center 11 it is arranged a teletext unit 16, an identification unit 17, a member data¬ base 18, a teletext station selector 19, as well as a tele¬ text page-selector 20. In addition there is a personal computer/Internet unit 31 adapted to receive/transmit in¬ formation from/to the personal computer 7 at the players location. This last mentioned communication may take place via an analog or digital line, such as ISDN. The function of these blocks will be described in more detail below.
The communication center 11 is also connected to the bank unit 12 and the game unit 13, but the two last mention¬ ed units are also, according to a preferred embodiment as- sociated with several sub-functions. Below the bank unit 12 a security box 21 is arranged, in particular adapted for checking of PIN-codes and a receipt unit 22 to register and store receipts associated with finished games.
Below the game unit 13 there are, in the shown embodi- ment which however only represents an example of implemen¬ tation of the invention, three units 23, 24, 25 adapted for collecting of information related to horse racing, football pools and numbers games (Lotto) . In addition there are still further units such as the system game unit 26, the odds calculating unit 27, an advising unit 28 and the unit for additional game information 29.
Finally there is provided a further security unit 30 implemented as an insulated security store 30, in particular adapted to function as a back-up store of receipts. This security unit 30 may be incorporated in the game unit 6, but may also be located at a remote place due to security reas¬ ons.
The function of the system will be briefly explained below with reference to Fig. 2. When a player 1 will contact the game system and ac¬ cordingly also the gambling station 6, he uses his telephone 33 and dials the number to the gambling station. Then a speech connection is established via general telecommuni¬ cation network of any time, to the autio unit 10 within the gambling station 6. The audio unit 10 reacts on the call by returning a question, e.g. by means of a digital speech generator, asking who the calling player is and also asks the player to state this by means of his keyboard. The user then may depress the keys corresponding to a number stating his identity, such as a bank account number, a member number or even his own phone number, whereupon the audio unit 10 via the communication exchange 11 checks all these details in its identification unit 17 and in the member database 18. In this connection a check may also be carried out to ensure that consistent or correlating numbers are received to en¬ hance the security function. If the signal returning from the communication unit 11 to the audio unit 10 represents an acceptance of the member identification, the communication exchange 11 at the same time will transmit information to the audio unit 10 whether the present subscriber 1 is as- sociated to a teletext facility or not, and if this is the case, also via which television stations he is associated. If the subscriber 1 has a teletext facility, the page selec¬ tor 20 will search for free teletext pages and a unique teletext page will be communicated to the player 1 and corresponding information is transmitted via the communi¬ cation exchange 11 to the television stations 2 involved in the transmission to the present subscriber 1. The player 1 then receives a phone message from the audio unit 10 and is asked to select page x from the television station Y. The player 1 then will receive information via the audio unit 10, via the phone 33 and from the television station 2 on his unique teletext page on his television set 32.
Once this/these connection(s) is/are established, the audio unit 10 and/or the teletext page request (s) that the user gives his bank account number (or another identifi¬ cation number) , which then are checked via the communication exchange 11 and the bank unit 12, whereupon the security is further increased as the user 1 is asked to give his perso¬ nal identification or PIN-code which thereafter is checked by the PIN-code unit 21. The bank unit 12 also is connected to external banks 3 via the communication exchange 11. How¬ ever, the situation may be that a separate bank account has been established within the very bank unit 12 meant only for use in connection with such games. With this implementation of the exchange it is ensured that the player may accomplish the game procedure from any accessible location having a key telephone and possibly other optional equipment, that is even if he is not present at his own home station.
If all conditions are accepted so far, the player is asked to select the games in which he want to participate, whereupon he is interconnected to the game unit 13 and its sub-units related to the different types of games included. The game unit 13, via the communication exchange 11, also is connected to the participating bookmaker companies 4,5 as mentioned above. The game unit 13 may now collect relevant and new details from the bookmaker 4,5 related to just the game in which the user want to participate. All such details are not mentioned here, but if e.g. football pools are considered, several facts about the team composition, diffe¬ rent injuries, previous results etc., may be of interest. For other gambling societies corresponding data may be given. In a similar way odds and different advises related to all types of betting and gambling may be collected. Statistical data of different origin related to the game in question, may also be found. Accordingly it should be under- stood that the game unit 13 with its sub-units may be adapt¬ ed to the different types of games and to the players de¬ sires.
Once the player has collected all advices he needs to accomplish his game, he is asked to select his present combinations or systems by means of the telephone keys.
When the desired game combination has been selected, it is transmitted to the communication exchange 11 which via the bank unit 12 cheks whether there is sufficient coverage, whereupon the relevant account is debited and a clearence signal is sent to the game unit 13 at the same time as a receipt is made, registered and stored in the receipt unit 22 and possibly also in an isolated security store 30 via the communication exchange 11. The very game is then at once undertaken as the game unit 13 via the communication ex- change 11 forward data to the selected bookmaker company 4,5 about the game which is made.
It should be emphasized that all the shown inter¬ connections between the different function blocks are imple¬ mented as two-way data connections which may be realized in any known manner if only the capacity and the bandwidth is sufficient to transmit the required signals. The signals may also be transmitted in different manners, i.e. as optical signals, as electronic voltage levels, and/or as puls code signals, and if desired the transmission may be undertaken on a multiplex basis within such systems.
If the player has an associated personal computer PC 7, all information may possibly be transmitted via this comput¬ er, e.g. on Internett, or by directly establishing calls via the telecommunication network, e.g. via an ISDN connection, or via a more conventional analog telephone connection, to the gambling station 6. Information signals from/to the personal computer 7 is treated in suitable interfaces in the personal computer itself or in the Internett unit 31.
The function of the plant substantially will be as explained above, but it should be emphasized that the system may be varied and modified in many ways without leaving the scope of the present invention. Some of the functions may e.g. be located outside the gambling station, e.g. within an external bank 3 if expedient. The numbers used as inform¬ ation data may also include alpha numeric symbols as well as numbers in a specific number system. Although the interfaces between different units normally will be placed within the communication unit 11, many of those may be located in other units if desired. It should also be noted that some or all functional units may be designed as separate electronic circuits and/or may be implemented by means of software. The advices and the information needed as a basis for the game unit 13, may be collected from external and internal sour¬ ces, several function units may be deleted from the central unit 6 and the number of players which can use the game facilities at same time are only limited by the system design and complexity.
Priority Applications (3)
|Application Number||Priority Date||Filing Date||Title|
|PCT/NO1997/000021 WO1997028636A1 (en)||1996-01-31||1997-01-29||A method and a means for performing a service via an interactive telecommunication network|
|Publication Number||Publication Date|
|EP0875112A1 true true EP0875112A1 (en)||1998-11-04|
Family Applications (1)
|Application Number||Title||Priority Date||Filing Date|
|EP19970902764 Withdrawn EP0875112A1 (en)||1996-01-31||1997-01-29||A method and a means for performing a service via an interactive telecommunication network|
Country Status (2)
|EP (1)||EP0875112A1 (en)|
|WO (1)||WO1997028636A1 (en)|
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|DE59901116D1 (en)||1998-02-19||2002-05-08||Swisscom Mobile Ag||Game system, method and corresponding devices adapted|
|US6799327B1 (en)||1998-07-14||2004-09-28||United Video Properties, Inc.||Program guide with selectable advertisements and pseudo-ads|
|US6893347B1 (en) *||1999-07-09||2005-05-17||Nokia Corporation||Method and apparatus for playing games between the clients of entities at different locations|
|WO2000022908A3 (en) *||1999-12-10||2000-11-30||Prikatti Ab Oy||Method, system and business model for performing electronic betting|
|US20020049975A1 (en) *||2000-04-05||2002-04-25||Thomas William L.||Interactive wagering system with multiple display support|
|DE10023848A1 (en) *||2000-05-16||2001-12-06||Peter Planki||Wireless participate in betting or gaming systems|
|US7341517B2 (en)||2003-04-10||2008-03-11||Cantor Index, Llc||Real-time interactive wagering on event outcomes|
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|US5365575A (en) *||1985-07-10||1994-11-15||First Data Resources Inc.||Telephonic-interface lottery system|
|US5083272A (en) *||1988-11-02||1992-01-21||Britcanus Corporation||Interactive telephone lottery system with a verification code|
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|17P||Request for examination filed||
Effective date: 19980821
|RAP1||Transfer of rights of an ep application||
Owner name: C2PLAY AS
|17Q||First examination report||
Effective date: 20031024
|18D||Deemed to be withdrawn||
Effective date: 20040504