JP2004013527A - Contents distribution device and method - Google Patents

Contents distribution device and method Download PDF

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Publication number
JP2004013527A
JP2004013527A JP2002166140A JP2002166140A JP2004013527A JP 2004013527 A JP2004013527 A JP 2004013527A JP 2002166140 A JP2002166140 A JP 2002166140A JP 2002166140 A JP2002166140 A JP 2002166140A JP 2004013527 A JP2004013527 A JP 2004013527A
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JP
Japan
Prior art keywords
data
streaming
content
request
terminal device
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.)
Pending
Application number
JP2002166140A
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Japanese (ja)
Inventor
Junichi Kudo
Yoichiro Sako
佐古 曜一郎
工藤 淳一
Original Assignee
Sony Corp
ソニー株式会社
Priority date (The priority date 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 date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date
Application filed by Sony Corp, ソニー株式会社 filed Critical Sony Corp
Priority to JP2002166140A priority Critical patent/JP2004013527A/en
Publication of JP2004013527A publication Critical patent/JP2004013527A/en
Application status is Pending legal-status Critical

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Abstract

To provide a user who has purchased content data with convenience in using the content data.
In response to a request received by a receiving unit, when a download request is made, the requested content data is read from a storage unit to generate download data, and when a streaming request is made, a request from the storage unit is generated. The content data is read to generate streaming data, the generated download data and streaming data are transmitted to the terminal device 20 in response to the request received by the reception unit 12, and the download data is transmitted to the transmission unit. When the data is transmitted from the transmission unit 16, a charging process is performed.
[Selection diagram] Fig. 1

Description

[0001]
TECHNICAL FIELD OF THE INVENTION
The present invention relates to a content distribution device and a content distribution method for distributing content data via a network in response to a request from a terminal device.
[0002]
[Prior art]
There is a content distribution system such as EMD (Electronic Music Distribution) that distributes content data such as game software, music data, movie data, and the like using a network such as the Internet. In this type of system, a user accesses a server device with a terminal device, selects desired content data, selects a settlement method, and the like, and then downloads the selected content data from the server device. As a result, the user can save the file of the downloaded content data to the hard disk of the personal computer owned by the user, an IC card or an optical disk as an external storage device, or the like. When the user saves the file in which the downloaded content data is bundled in the external storage device, the user can attach the external storage device to the portable information processing device, and store the external storage device at a desired place at a desired place. Content data stored in the device can be played and enjoyed.
[0003]
[Problems to be solved by the invention]
By the way, when a user purchases desired content data and downloads it from a server device, a file of the content data is stored in a hard disk of a personal computer or an external storage device. A user can copy a file of content data stored in a hard disk of a personal computer or an external storage device to various storage media. However, unrestricted copying of files by the user unfairly harms the interests of the copyright holder of the content data. Therefore, the content data distributed from the server device includes copy prohibition data or copyright management data as copyright management data. The data includes copy number restriction data and the like. Therefore, even if the user purchases the content data, the user may not be able to reproduce the content data on a device other than the device that has downloaded the content data or at a different place.
[0004]
This is the same when the user purchases a package medium in which an independent recording medium such as an optical disk on which content data is recorded is stored in a storage body. That is, the user who has purchased the package medium has substantially purchased the content data recorded on the recording medium, and when the user does not carry the recording medium such as an optical disc despite purchasing the content data, the recording is performed. The content data recorded on the medium cannot be reproduced.
[0005]
The present invention has been made in view of the above-described problems, and has as its object to provide a content distribution device and a content that can provide a user who has purchased content data with convenience in using the content data. To provide a distribution method.
[0006]
Specifically, an object of the present invention is to make it possible to view content data for free or at a low price when content data is accessed by a person who has purchased the content data via a network or package media, thereby improving user convenience. An object of the present invention is to provide a content distribution device and a content distribution method that can be achieved.
[0007]
[Means for Solving the Problems]
In order to solve the above-described problems, a content distribution device according to the present invention includes a storage unit that stores a plurality of content data, and a download of one or a plurality of content data stored in the storage unit from at least one terminal device. Receiving means for receiving a request or a streaming request, and in response to the request received by the receiving means, read out the requested content data from the storage means at the time of a download request and generate download data, and store the data at the time of the streaming request. Means for reading content data requested from the means and generating streaming data; and a terminal for downloading the download data and the streaming data generated by the data generating means in response to the request received by the receiving means. Transmission means for transmitting to the device, and download And an accounting process when transmitted from the transmitting means to use the data, and a charging processing unit not to perform the charging process when transmitted from the transmitting means of streaming data.
[0008]
Further, the content distribution method according to the present invention, the step of storing a plurality of content data, receiving a download request or streaming request of one or more stored content data from at least one terminal device, In response to the received request, read out the requested content data in the case of a download request to generate download data, and read out the requested content data in the case of a streaming request to generate streaming data, Transmitting the generated download data and the streaming data to the terminal device in response to the request received by the receiving unit; and performing a charging process when transmitting the download data and transmitting the streaming data. Perform billing process And a step of so no.
[0009]
Further, the content distribution device according to the present invention receives a storage unit for storing a plurality of content data, and a download request or a streaming request of one or a plurality of content data stored in the storage unit from at least one terminal device. Receiving means for reading, and in response to a request received by the receiving means, reads out the requested content data from the storage means at the time of a download request and generates download data, and receives the request from the storage means at the time of a streaming request. Data generation means for reading content data and generating streaming data, and transmission means for transmitting download data and streaming data generated by the data generation means to a terminal device in response to a request received by the reception means And means for transmitting download data Ri and an accounting process with a first price when sending, and a charging processing means for performing accounting processing at lower than the first price second price when transmitted from the transmitting means of streaming data.
[0010]
Still further, in the content distribution method according to the present invention, the step of storing a plurality of content data; and the step of receiving a download request or a streaming request of one or more stored content data from at least one terminal device; Reading the requested content data in the case of a download request to generate download data in response to the received request, and reading the requested content data in the case of a streaming request to generate streaming data. Transmitting the generated download data and streaming data to the terminal device in response to the request received by the receiving means, performing a charging process when transmitting the download data, and transmitting the streaming data. Sometimes the first value And a step of the charging process at a lower second price.
[0011]
Furthermore, the content distribution device includes a database for registering content identification data of one or a plurality of content data to be owned by purchasing the package media in association with the owner identification data, and a content recorded on the package media. Storage means for storing one or more content data, receiving means for receiving a streaming request for one or more content data stored in the storage means from at least one terminal device; Data generating means for reading out the content data requested to be streamed from the storage means in response to the streaming request, and generating streaming data; content identification data and owner identification data transmitted from the terminal device and received by the receiving means; In the database Authentication means for authenticating the owner who sent the streaming request by comparing the content identification data and the owner identification data, and streaming data generated by the data generation means when the authentication means obtains authentication. Means for transmitting the streaming data to the terminal device in response to the streaming request received by the receiving means, and charging processing for transmitting the streaming data from the transmitting means at no charge or at a price lower than the purchase price of the package media. Means.
[0012]
Still further, the content distribution method includes the steps of: registering content identification data of one or a plurality of pieces of content data owned by purchasing the package media in a database in association with the owner identification data; Accumulating one or a plurality of recorded content data, receiving a streaming request of the stored one or more content data from at least one terminal device, and responding to the received streaming request. Reading the content data requested to be streamed and generating streaming data; and transmitting the received content identification data and owner identification data transmitted from the terminal device to the content identification data registered in the database. Comparing the identification data with an authentication of the owner who transmitted the streaming request; and, when the authentication is obtained, transmitting the generated streaming data to the terminal device in response to the received streaming request. And transmitting the streaming data at a price that is free or lower than the purchase price of the package media.
[0013]
BEST MODE FOR CARRYING OUT THE INVENTION
Hereinafter, a content distribution system to which the present invention is applied will be described with reference to the drawings.
[0014]
A content distribution system 1 to which the present invention is applied is a system used to provide a service for distributing content data to a user. As shown in FIG. 1, the content distribution system 1 includes a content distribution device 10 in which a plurality of pieces of content data are stored, and terminal devices 20a and 20b connected to the content distribution device 10 via a network 2. The content distribution device 10 and the terminal devices 20a and 20b are connected via a network 2 such as an ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network) line, a CATV (Cable Television) line, an optical cable line, an xDSL (xDigital Subscriber Line), and the like. Transmission of TCP / IP (Transmission Control Protocol / Internet Protocol), FTP (File Transfer Protocol), etc. Carry out the exchange of data in accordance with the protocol. The terminal devices 20a and 20b can access the content distribution device 10 via the network 2 to download desired content data, and stream the content data that has been downloaded by accessing the content distribution device 10. It has a function that can be played. The content distribution device 10 has a billing processing unit for generating billing data for each user, and performs billing processing on the user according to the number of downloads and the number of streaming. The accounting data for each user is transmitted to the database of the center 4.
[0015]
Here, the terminal devices 20a and 20b are devices having the same configuration, but are installed, for example, in different places. The terminal device 20a is a device that downloads content data from the content distribution device 10. The terminal device 20b is a device that accesses the server device 10 to stream and reproduce content data.
[0016]
In this content distribution system 1, a user selects one or a plurality of content data from a plurality of content data stored in the content distribution device 10 using the terminal device 20a, specifies a payment method, and then selects the selected content data. Can be downloaded. The user can reproduce the purchased or downloaded content data at any time using the terminal device 20a. In addition, after purchasing the content data, the user accesses the content distribution device 10 with a terminal device 20b different from the terminal device 20a that has downloaded the content data, for example, the terminal device 20b in a location different from the terminal device 20a that has downloaded the content data. Then, the purchased content data can be streamed for free or at a price lower than the purchase price. In such a content distribution system 1, a user can freely perform streaming playback of content data once purchased by himself / herself, regardless of the terminal device, and can enjoy playing back the content data.
[0017]
A content distribution device 10 used in such a content distribution system 1 is a device set up by a provider or the like that operates the content distribution system 1, and has a configuration substantially similar to a normal server device. As shown in FIG. 2, the content distribution device 10 includes a storage unit 11 for storing a plurality of content data to be provided for the content distribution service, a download request, a streaming request, and the like of the content data transmitted from the terminal devices 20a and 20b. Receiving section 12, a searching section 13 for searching and reading content data in the storage section 11 based on data such as a download request and a streaming request received by the receiving section 12, and a content data read by the searching section 13. A download data generation unit 14 that generates download data, a streaming data generation unit 15 that generates streaming data from the content data read by the search unit 13, a download data generation unit 14, or a streaming data generation unit 15. Raw And a transmission unit 16 for transmitting the data terminal device 20a, to 20b. Further, the content distribution device 10 includes a database 17 for managing a user ID or the like for identifying a user who has downloaded the content data to be provided for the content distribution service, and a registration updating unit for registering a user ID or the like for identifying the user in the database 17. 18 and an authentication unit 19 for authenticating the user who has transmitted the streaming request.
[0018]
The storage unit 11 includes, for example, a large-capacity hard disk, and the hard disk stores a plurality of content data to be provided for the content distribution service. The content data includes game software, music data, movie data, image data, and the like. In addition, the storage unit 11 stores list information of stored content data and the like. In addition, the storage unit 11 stores image data and the like constituting a web page necessary for providing the content distribution service.
[0019]
The receiving unit 12 receives a download request for a resource located in address data such as a URL (Uniform Resource Locator) specified by the terminal devices 20a and 20b. In addition, the receiving unit 12 receives a selection signal of content data selected by the user, a download request of content data, a streaming request, and the like transmitted from the terminal devices 20a and 20b.
[0020]
The search unit 13 receives data such as a download request received by the receiving unit 12. When data is input from the reception unit 12, the search unit 13 searches the storage unit 11 based on the input data, and reads out content data or the like corresponding to the input data. For example, when predetermined address data is input from the receiving unit 12, the search unit 13 reads out image data and the like indicated by the address data from the storage unit 11. Also, when a download request for content data and a selection signal such as a content ID are input from the reception unit 12, the search unit 13 reads out the content data indicated by the content ID of the selection signal from the storage unit 11, and transmits the content data to the download data. Output to the generation unit 14. Further, when the streaming request for the content data and the content ID of the selection signal are input from the receiving unit 12, the search unit 13 reads out the content data indicated by the content ID from the storage unit 11 and sends this to the streaming data generation unit 15. Output.
[0021]
The download data generation unit 14 receives the content data read by the search unit 13. The download data generation unit 14 generates one download file in which one piece of content data is collected, and outputs this file to the transmission unit 16.
[0022]
When the download file is generated, the content data read from the storage unit 11 may be compressed so that the download can be performed quickly. Furthermore, in order to prevent the compressed content data from being reproduced even when it is illegally acquired by a third party, the content data may be encrypted by a method that can be decrypted with the encryption key data owned by the terminal device 20a. Good.
[0023]
Here, the download file generated by the download data generation unit 14 will be described with reference to FIG. 4. As shown in FIG. 4A, the download file is a unit of one piece of content data. The terminal device 20a that downloads this download file stores this file in the memory 22 shown in FIG. 6 as shown in FIG. 4B. As shown in FIG. 4C, when the download file is reproduced by the terminal device 20a, the content data is read from the file stored in the memory 22 and reproduced. That is, the download file is copied to the memory 22 of the terminal device 20a that has downloaded from the content distribution device 10. Therefore, the user can reproduce the content data many times based on the file stored in the memory 22 of the terminal device 20a, and copy the file stored in the memory 22 to another recording medium. can do. When the user downloads desired content data, the content distribution device 10 stores a file of the same content in the memory 22 of the terminal device 20a, and thus charges the user who downloads the content data.
[0024]
As shown in FIG. 2, the streaming data generation unit 15 receives the content data read by the search unit 13. Specifically, as shown in FIG. 3, the streaming data generation unit 15 compresses the content data input from the search unit 13 via the terminal 15d, and encrypts the compressed content data. It has an encryption unit 15b and a packetization unit 15c that packetizes the compressed and encrypted content data in a predetermined unit and outputs the packet to the transmission unit 16 via the terminal 15e. In the streaming reproduction, the terminal device 20b performs reproduction while receiving data. Since the content data needs to be reproduced continuously, the compression unit 15a converts the content data into MPEG4 (Motion Picture Expert Group 4: (Trademark) to reduce the data size. For example, the compression unit 15a separately divides objects constituting a scene, such as a background, a foreground, and a moving person therein, and performs encoding for each object, that is, a process of reducing spatial and temporal redundancy. The encryption unit 15b encrypts the compressed content data using a method that can be decrypted with the encryption / decryption key data possessed by the terminal device 20b, in order to prevent the content data from being illegally acquired and reproduced by a third party. The packetizing unit 15c divides the compressed and encrypted content data into small packets, and creates a temporary file for each packet. Then, the packetizing unit 15c adds a control signal for streaming distribution such as a control signal for performing stream distribution by multicast to each temporary file, tans the sequentially created temporary file, and transmits the temporary file via the transmission unit 15d. 16 is output. That is, the streaming data generation unit 15 compresses the content data read from the storage unit 11 to reduce the data size, and further divides the compressed content data into packet units, thereby quickly transmitting the content data to the terminal device 20b. Enable sending.
[0025]
Here, the streaming data generated by the streaming data generating unit 15 will be described with reference to FIG. 5. Each content data read from the storage unit 11 is divided by the streaming data generating unit 15 into packets. Then, each packet is sequentially transmitted to the terminal device 20b as one file. As shown in FIG. 5A, the terminal device 20b sequentially receives the temporary files transmitted from the content distribution device 10, and as shown in FIG. 5B, stores one or a plurality of temporary files in FIG. In the buffer memory 23 shown in FIG. As shown in FIG. 5C, the terminal device 20b sequentially connects the link information and the like included in the plurality of temporary files temporarily stored in the buffer memory 23 so as to be continuous on the time axis, and The reproduced data is sequentially reproduced, and the reproduced temporary files are sequentially deleted from the buffer memory 23. That is, at the time of streaming reproduction, the temporary files temporarily stored in the buffer memory 23 are sequentially deleted when the reproduction ends, and do not remain in the terminal device 20b. Therefore, when the same content data is to be reproduced again after the content data is streamed and reproduced by the terminal device 20b, it is necessary to access the content distribution device 10 again and sequentially download a temporary file constituting a part of the content data. There is. In streaming, a temporary file that is a part of the content data is downloaded, and this temporary file is deleted when the reproduction ends. Therefore, the capacity of the memory 22 of the terminal device 20b may be at least a capacity capable of storing a temporary file so that the content data can be continuously played back. It is smaller than when downloading as a file. Further, at the time of streaming reproduction, since the copy of the content data does not remain in the memory 22 or the buffer memory 23, it is possible to prevent the copy of the content data from being illegally spread by the user.
[0026]
In the streaming reproduction, the content data may be divided and the temporary file may be sequentially downloaded, and after the reproduction is completed, the entire content data may be downloaded and the file may be deleted instead of deleting the lower temporary file. .
[0027]
The transmitting unit 16 transmits data corresponding to the data received by the receiving unit 12 to the terminal devices 20a and 20b. For example, the transmitting unit 16 transmits the image data indicated by the address data to the terminal devices 20a and 20b when the receiving unit 12 receives the web page download request. When the download file is input from the download data generation unit 14, the transmission unit 16 transmits the download file to the terminal device 20a, and the streaming data generation unit 15 outputs the streaming temporary file. When input, the temporary files are sequentially transmitted to the terminal device 20b.
[0028]
Note that when transmitting the streaming temporary file to the terminal device 20b, the transmitting unit 16 monitors the free space in the buffer memory 23 of the destination terminal device 20b, and the buffer memory 23 of the destination terminal device 20b overflows. The temporary files for streaming may be sequentially transmitted so as to prevent the occurrence of the temporary file. More specifically, the transmission unit 16 may temporarily suspend transmission of the temporary file or temporarily reduce the transmission speed when the buffer memory 23 of the destination terminal device 20b is likely to overflow.
[0029]
By the way, when the user downloads desired content data, the content distribution apparatus 10 performs a billing process for each user, and as a privilege, free or cheaper than the purchase price at the time of download only for the user who has performed the download. Perform billing processing at the purchase price. For this reason, the content distribution device 10 has a database 17 for managing users who have downloaded the content data, a search / update unit 18 that accesses the database 17, and a user who has purchased the content data by download or no charge. An authentication unit 19 for allowing streaming playback at low cost is provided.
[0030]
The database 17 is stored in the same or different large-capacity hard disk as the storage unit 11. The database 17 includes, as fields, a user ID for identifying the user who purchased the content data, that is, a user who downloaded the content data, a content ID for identifying the content data downloaded by the user, and the number of times the user performed streaming. And the amount of money to be charged to the user.
[0031]
Table 1 below shows an example in which charging processing is performed for a user who has purchased content data, streaming playback is free for the user a predetermined number of times, and when the predetermined number of times is exceeded, charging is performed each time streaming playback is performed. Is shown.
[0032]
[Table 1]
[0033]
That is, Table 1 is an example in which the amount of the download is $ 500 per content data, the streaming playback is free up to 5 times, and when it is 6 times or more, $ 100 per streaming playback is charged. . For example, “Bill” is a person who has purchased the content data “AAA”, and has performed streaming reproduction six times so far. For this reason, the total billing amount is $ 500 for downloading and $ 600 for one streaming charge. “John” is a person who has purchased the content data “CCC”, and has performed one streaming reproduction so far, which is equal to or less than a predetermined number of five times. Therefore, the total billing amount is $ 500 for downloading and $ 500 for streaming when the fee is $ 0.
[0034]
The charging amount for streaming reproduction is set lower than the amount at the time of downloading in order to avoid leaving files in the memory 22 of the terminal device 20b for streaming and to improve the convenience for the user who downloaded the content data. I have. In the example of Table 1, when the number of times of streaming becomes 6 or more, streaming may be prohibited instead of charging.
[0035]
Table 2 below shows that the user who purchased the content data is charged at a first price, and the user is charged up to a predetermined number of times for streaming reproduction at a second price lower than at the time of downloading. An example is shown in which, when the number of times exceeds a predetermined number, charging is performed at a third price higher than the second price every time streaming playback is performed.
[0036]
[Table 2]
[0037]
That is, Table 2 shows that the amount of the download is $ 500 per content data, the streaming playback is $ 10 once for up to 5 times, and $ 100 per streaming playback for 6 times or more. It is an example. For example, “Bill” is a person who has purchased the content data “AAA”, and has performed streaming reproduction six times so far. For this reason, the total billing amount at the time of downloading is 500 for the number of streaming times of 5 or less, 50 (10 × 5 times), and 100 for the number of streaming times of 6 times or more, {100 (100 × 1 time)}. 650. “John” is a person who has purchased the content data “CCC”, and has performed streaming reproduction once so far, so that the number is less than a predetermined five times. Therefore, the total billing amount is $ 10 (# 10 x 1) as the number of streaming times, and the total billing amount is $ 510 including the billing amount at the time of downloading $ 500.
[0038]
When the number of times of streaming reproduction is equal to or less than the predetermined number of times, and when the number of times exceeds the predetermined number of times, the streaming does not leave a file in the memory 22 of the terminal device 20b, and the convenience for the user who downloads the content data. In order to improve, it is set lower than the amount at the time of download. In the example of Table 2, when the number of times of streaming becomes 6 or more, streaming may be prohibited instead of charging at the third price.
[0039]
Note that, in the examples of Tables 1 and 2, an example has been described in which a threshold for starting charging or increasing the charging amount is provided when the number of streaming times exceeds a predetermined number, but this threshold is not necessarily provided. No need. When the threshold value is eliminated and streaming can be performed free of charge or cheaper than download regardless of the number of times of streaming, the economic burden on the user can be further reduced, and the user can use it more easily. Become.
[0040]
The registration updating unit 18 records data on the user in the database 17 and reads out data on the user recorded in the database 17. That is, when the user downloads the desired content data, the registration updating unit 18 records the user ID transmitted from the terminal device 20, the content ID of the downloaded content data, and the charge amount in the database 17. In addition, when the user who downloaded the content data, that is, the user who purchased the content data performs streaming reproduction, the registration updating unit 18 adds 1 to the number of times of streaming. In the example shown in Table 1 above, when the number of times of streaming reproduction is six or more, the registration updating unit 18 adds $ 100 per time. In addition, in the example of Table 2 described above, the registration updating unit 18 adds $ 10 when the number of streaming reproductions is 5 or less, and adds $ 100 when the number of times of streaming reproduction is 6 or more. Further, the registration updating unit 18 reads out the amount of money of each user registered in the database 17 when performing the settlement processing every predetermined period such as monthly, and transmits the billing data to the billing center 4 from the transmission unit 16. .
[0041]
The authentication unit 19 performs an authentication process for enabling only the user who downloaded the content data to perform streaming reproduction of the content data. The user who has purchased, ie, downloaded, the content data is the owner of the content data, and it is necessary to enable free or inexpensive streaming reproduction only for the downloaded content data. Therefore, when the receiving unit 12 receives the streaming request, the authentication unit 19 accesses the database 17 and, based on the user ID transmitted from the terminal device 20, transmits the streaming request to the user who downloaded the content data in the past. It is determined whether or not the user has performed. Then, the authentication unit 19 permits the user to perform streaming reproduction of the content data only when the user who transmitted the streaming request is a user who has downloaded the content data in the past.
[0042]
As shown in FIG. 2, when the receiving unit 12 receives the content data selection signal and the download request from the terminal device 20a, the content distribution device 10 configured as described above accesses the storage unit 11 by the search unit 13. Then, the content data corresponding to the content ID of the selection signal is read, and the read content data is output to the download data generation unit 14. At the same time, the registration update unit 18 registers the user ID for downloading in the database 17 and records a charge $ 500 at the time of download in association with the registered user ID. In the content distribution device 10, the download data generation unit 14 forms a download file from the content data input from the search unit 13, and transmits this file from the transmission unit 16 to the terminal device 20a.
[0043]
Further, when the content distribution device 10 accesses the terminal device 20b for streaming reproduction, the authentication unit 19 accesses the database 17 based on the user ID transmitted from the terminal device 20b, and determines whether the user is a registered user. Make a judgment. Then, when the user is a registered user, that is, when the same user ID exists in the database 17, the content distribution device 10 transmits a list of content data that can be streamed to the terminal device 20b. Upon receiving the content data selection signal and the streaming request from the terminal device 20b, the content distribution device 10 accesses the storage unit 11 by the search unit 13 and reads and reads the content data corresponding to the content ID of the selection signal. The generated content data is output to the streaming data generation unit 15. Then, as shown in FIG. 3, in the content distribution device 10, the streaming data generation unit 15 performs a compression encryption process on the content data, further divides the content data into packets, creates a temporary file in packet units, and The temporary files are transmitted sequentially from 16. At the same time, the registration update unit 18 adds 1 to the number of times of streaming of the content data to be streamed, and charges when the number of times of streaming exceeds a predetermined number.
[0044]
Next, the terminal devices 20a and 20b accessing the content distribution device 10 will be described with reference to FIG. The terminal devices 20a and 20b are information processing devices including, for example, a stationary or portable personal computer installed in a user's home, and access the content distribution device 10 to download desired content data. It is a device that can perform streaming playback. That is, the user pays for and downloads desired content data using the terminal device 20a, and then downloads another terminal device 20b in which the downloaded content data is not stored, for example, the terminal device 20b in a different place such as a friend's house. , Streaming reproduction of content data downloaded in the past can be performed.
[0045]
As shown in FIG. 6, the terminal devices 20a and 20b include a receiving unit 21 for receiving data transmitted from the content distribution device 10, a memory 22 for storing content data downloaded from the content distribution device 10, and a content distribution device. A buffer memory 23 for storing a temporary file for streaming playback downloaded from the apparatus 10, a playback processing unit 24 for performing content data playback processing at the time of playback, a speaker 25 for converting audio data into a playback sound and outputting the image, 26, an operation unit 27 for selecting content data, performing a reproduction operation, and the like, a transmission unit 28 for transmitting data such as a download request and a streaming request to the content distribution device 10, and controlling the overall operation. And a control unit 29 that performs the operation.
[0046]
The receiving unit 21 receives data transmitted from the content distribution device 10. For example, when accessing the home page of the content distribution system 1, the receiving unit 21 receives image data and the like constituting the home page transmitted from the content distribution apparatus 10. Further, when transmitting a download request for desired content data to the content distribution device 10, the receiving unit 21 downloads the corresponding content data from the content distribution device 10. Further, when transmitting a streaming request for predetermined content data to the content distribution device 10, the receiving unit 21 sequentially receives the temporary files constituting the content data transmitted from the content distribution device 10.
[0047]
The memory 22 includes a hard disk built in the apparatus main body, a built-in recording medium such as a RAM (Random Access Memory), a recordable optical disk, and a removable recording medium such as an IC card. The downloaded download file is saved. The download file stored here is the content data selected by the user accessing the content distribution device 10 and is the data generated by the download data generation unit 14 of the content distribution device 10. This download file is a set of one piece of content data, and can be reproduced by the terminal device 20a in response to a user operation.
[0048]
The memory 22 further includes an operation system for managing hardware such as peripheral devices, providing a user interface for a user to operate a personal computer, software for creating and transmitting e-mail, a web page, and the like. Software such as an Internet browser for browsing may be stored.
[0049]
The buffer memory 23 is provided on a part of the recording medium constituting the memory 22 or on another recording medium. This buffer memory 23 temporarily stores a temporary file for streaming when the content data transmitted from the content distribution device 10 is played back by streaming. The data of the streaming temporary file is rearranged so as to be continuous on the time axis using link information and the like included in each temporary file, and is sequentially read out and reproduced. The temporary files are deleted from the buffer memory 23 in order when they are reproduced. That is, the buffer memory 23 only needs to have at least a storage capacity enough to store a plurality of temporary files enough to continuously reproduce content data. The buffer memory 23 does not require as much storage capacity as the memory 22.
[0050]
The reading speed of the content data from the buffer memory 23 may be set lower than the transmission speed from the content distribution device 10 so that the buffer memory 23 does not underflow.
[0051]
In addition, the buffer memory 23 may be used as a memory for decompressing compressed data when performing streaming reproduction and temporarily storing encrypted data when decrypting the data. .
[0052]
As shown in FIG. 7, the reproduction processing unit 24 includes an encryption / decryption unit 24a that decrypts the encrypted data input via the terminal 24e, an expansion unit 24b that expands the compressed data, A decoder 24c that demodulates the input data and outputs the data to the speaker 25 and the monitor 26 through the terminal 24f, and outputs the data that is input to the encryption / decryption unit 24a that is compressed and encrypted and is not encrypted to the decoder 24c. And a switching unit 24d for inputting.
[0053]
The switching unit 24d includes an input terminal 24g to which data read from the memory 22 or the buffer memory 23 is input, an output terminal 24h for outputting the data input to the input terminal 24g to the encryption / decryption unit 24a, And an output terminal 24i for outputting data input to the decoder 24c to the decoder 24c. When the compressed and encrypted data is input to the input terminal 24g, the switching unit 24d connects the input terminal 24g and the output terminal 24h, and the compressed and encrypted data is input to the encryption / decryption unit 24a. To do. Further, the switching unit 24d connects the input terminal 24g and the output terminal 24i when uncompressed and encrypted data is input to the input terminal 24g, and the uncompressed and encrypted data is directly input to the decoder 24c. So that
[0054]
For example, the content data distributed from the content distribution device 10 is not compressed and encrypted at the time of downloading, but is compressed and encrypted at the time of streaming reproduction. In this case, when reproducing the downloaded content data, the switching unit 24d connects the input terminal 24g and the output terminal 24i so that the data read from the memory 22 is input to the decoder 24c. Also, the switching unit 24d connects the input terminal 24g and the output terminal 24h when streaming reproduction is performed, so that data read from the buffer memory 23 is input to the encryption / decryption unit 24a.
[0055]
The encryption / decryption unit 24a has encryption / decryption key data. When the encryption data is input, the encryption / decryption unit 24a decodes the input data using the encryption / decryption data and outputs the decrypted data to the decompression unit 24b. The decompression unit 24b decompresses individually coded objects, for example, when they are compressed by MPEG4, performs processing such as re-synthesis, etc., and outputs them to the decoder 24c. The decoder 24c demodulates using the conversion table, for example, when the modulation data subjected to 8-14 modulation or 8-16 modulation is input. The decoder 24c decodes an error correction code added to the input data and performs an error correction process. Then, the decoder 24c converts the digital signal into an analog signal, and outputs the converted data to the speaker 25 and the monitor 26 via the terminal 24f.
[0056]
As shown in FIG. 6, the speaker 25 converts audio data included in the content data subjected to the reproduction process into a reproduced sound and outputs the sound. The speaker 25 may be a headphone, an earphone, or the like instead of the speaker 25. The monitor 26 is a CRT (Cathode Ray Tube), an LCD (Liquid Crystal Display), or the like, and displays image data, video data, character data, and the like included in the content data.
[0057]
The operation unit 27 includes a keyboard, a mouse, a numeric keypad, and the like, and generates an operation signal when operated by a user. For example, when downloading or streaming content data, the user can input address data using the operation unit 27, and can transmit a download request or a streaming request to the content distribution device 10. Further, the user can perform an operation of starting reproduction of the downloaded content data using the operation unit 27.
[0058]
The transmission unit 28 transmits the data to the content distribution device 10 via the network 2. The transmission unit 28 transmits a download request or a streaming request to the content distribution device 10 based on, for example, the address data input from the operation unit 27.
[0059]
The control unit 29 receives an operation signal input from the operation unit 27, and controls the entire apparatus according to the input operation signal. For example, when a download request, a streaming request, or the like is input from the operation unit 27, the control unit 29 transmits these to the content distribution device 10 from the transmission unit 28.
[0060]
As shown in FIG. 6, the terminal device 20a that downloads content data configured as described above allows the transmission unit 28 to input predetermined address data using the operation unit 27, and the When the user accesses the content distribution apparatus 10 that provides the content distribution service provided by the user, the receiving unit 21 downloads image data and the like constituting a web page for downloading content data, and displays the web page on the monitor 26. For example, when a list of downloadable content data, a charge table, and the like are displayed on the monitor 26, the user selects content data to be downloaded using the operation unit 27 while viewing the content displayed on the monitor 26. When the user selects content data to be downloaded, the terminal device 20a transmits a user ID, a content data selection signal, and a download request from the transmission unit 28. In the terminal device 20a, the receiving unit 21 downloads the download file of the content data transmitted from the content distribution device 10, and stores the downloaded file in the memory 22. At this time, the user is charged by the content distribution device 10 as a price for downloading the content data file.
[0061]
When reproducing the content data, the user selects a file stored in the memory 22 using the operation unit 27. Then, the terminal device 20a reads the content data of the selected file from the memory 22. Here, when the content data of the downloaded file is not compressed and encrypted, the content data read from the memory 22 is input to the decoder 24c via the switching unit 24d, decoded, and reproduced from the speaker 25. It is output as a sound and displayed on the monitor 26. When the content data of the downloaded file is compressed and encrypted, the content data read from the memory 22 is input to the encryption / decryption unit 24a via the switching unit 24d, and the encryption is decrypted. After the compression / decompression processing is performed, the data is decoded by the decoder 24c and output from the speaker 25 and the monitor 26.
[0062]
As described above, the content data downloaded by the user, that is, purchased, can be streamed and reproduced using the terminal device 20b different from the downloaded terminal device 20a, for example, the terminal device 20b installed in a different place. That is, when the user accesses the content distribution device 10 from the transmission unit 28 by inputting predetermined address data and a user ID using the operation unit 27, the terminal device 20b Download the list. For example, when a list of content data that can be streamed and reproduced is displayed on the monitor 26, the user selects content data to be streamed and reproduced using the operation unit 27 while viewing the content displayed on the monitor 26. When content data to be streamed and reproduced is selected by the user, the terminal device 20b transmits a content data selection signal such as a content ID and a streaming request from the transmission unit 28. Then, in the terminal device 20b, the receiving unit 21 sequentially downloads the temporary file for streaming of the content data transmitted from the content distribution device 10, and sequentially stores the temporary file in the buffer memory 23. The temporary files stored in the buffer memory 23 are rearranged so as to be continuous on the time axis based on the link information included in each temporary file, and are sequentially output from the buffer memory 23 to the encryption / decryption unit 24a.
[0063]
When the content data to be streamed and reproduced is compressed and encrypted, the content data read from the buffer memory 23 is decrypted by the decryption unit 24a via the switching unit 24d, and the decompression process is performed by the decompression unit 24a. After that, the decoder 24c performs a decoding process, outputs the reproduced sound from the speaker 25, and displays the reproduced sound on the monitor 26. The temporary file whose reproduction has been completed is deleted from the buffer memory 23. That is, when streaming reproduction of content data is performed, the data does not remain in the terminal device 20b.
[0064]
Next, a series of procedures from accessing the content distribution device 10 using the terminal device 20a to downloading desired content data will be described with reference to FIG.
[0065]
When the user inputs the address data of the web page for downloading the content data using the operation unit 27 and performs the transmission operation, the terminal device 20a transmits the web page download request to the content distribution device 10 in step S1. I do. In step S2, when receiving the download request of the web page for downloading the content data transmitted from the terminal device 20a, the content distribution device 10 receives, from the storage unit 11, the image data or the like constituting the web page for downloading the content data. And transmits this to the terminal device 20a from the transmission unit 16 via the network 2. Specifically, the content distribution device 10 transmits list data of content data provided for the download service to the terminal device 20a.
[0066]
In step S3, when the receiving unit 21 receives the list data of the downloadable content data from the content distribution device 10 in the receiving unit 21, the terminal device 20a performs processing such as converting a digital signal to an analog signal in the reproduction processing unit 24. , On the monitor 26. When the user selects one or a plurality of content data desired to be downloaded while viewing the list of downloadable content data displayed on the monitor 26, the terminal device 20a determines in step S4 that the content data selected by the transmission unit 28 A download request for the selected content data is transmitted to the content distribution device 10 together with the selection signal.
[0067]
Upon receiving the content data selection signal and the download request for the selected content data in the receiving unit 12, the content distribution device 10 generates estimation data for charging the user in step S5, and transmits the estimation data and the like to the terminal device. 20a.
[0068]
Upon receiving the estimation data and the like transmitted from the content distribution device 10, the terminal device 20a performs processing such as converting a digital signal to an analog signal in the reproduction processing unit 24, and selects the estimated amount and the payment method on the monitor 26. Display an image for If the user selects a payment method using the operation unit 27, for example, payment using a credit card or payment by cash transfer, and agrees with the estimated amount, the terminal device 20a determines in step S6 that the user has Data and the like are transmitted to the content distribution device 10. When the receiving unit 12 receives the consent data or the like from the terminal device 20a, the content distribution device 10 accesses the storage unit 11 by the search unit 13, reads out the content data corresponding to the content ID of the selection signal, and reads the read content data. Is output to the download data generation unit 14. At the same time, the registration update unit 18 registers the user ID for downloading in the database 17 and records a charge $ 500 at the time of download in association with the registered user ID. In the content distribution device 10, the download data generation unit 14 performs a compression process or the like on the content data input from the search unit 13 to form a download file, and in step S7, the download file is transmitted from the transmission unit 16. It transmits to the terminal device 20.
[0069]
In step S <b> 8, the terminal device 20 a uses the receiving unit 21 to download the download file of the content data transmitted from the content distribution device 10, and stores the file in the memory 22. That is, the download file generated by the content distribution device 10 is copied to the memory 22 of the terminal device 20a.
[0070]
When reproducing the content data, the user selects a file stored in the memory 22 using the operation unit 27. Then, the terminal device 20a reads the content data of the selected file from the memory 22. Here, when the content data of the downloaded file is not compressed and encrypted, the content data read from the memory 22 is input to the decoder 24c via the switching unit 24d, decoded, and reproduced from the speaker 25. It is output as a sound and displayed on the monitor 26. When the content data of the downloaded file is compressed and encrypted, the content data read from the memory 22 is decrypted by the decryption unit 24a via the switching unit 24d and input to the decompression unit 24b. After the compression / decompression processing is performed, the data is decoded by the decoder 24c and output from the speaker 25 and the monitor 26.
[0071]
Next, a procedure for performing streaming reproduction of content data downloaded by a user using a terminal device 20b different from the terminal device 20a will be described with reference to FIG. The terminal device 20b is a device different from the terminal device 20a that has downloaded the content data, and a file for download is not stored in the memory 22. The user performs this streaming reproduction when the user has already downloaded the content data but the content data is not stored in the memory 22 and cannot be reproduced.
[0072]
When the user inputs address data and a user ID of a web page for streaming reproduction of content data using the operation unit 27 and performs a transmission operation, the terminal device 20b transmits a request for downloading the web page and the user ID in step S11. Is transmitted to the content distribution device 10.
[0073]
In step S12, the content distribution device 10 accesses the database 17 with the authentication unit 19 based on the user ID transmitted from the terminal device 20b, and determines whether the accessed user is a registered user. When the authentication unit 19 determines that the accessed user is a registered user, that is, when the user ID is already registered in the database 17, the user ID is registered in the database 17 such as the title of the content data downloaded in the past. Then, data such as a title related to the content data is extracted and list data is generated. When the user ID transmitted from the terminal device 20b is not registered in the database 17, the authentication unit 19 determines that the access is from an unregistered user, that is, a user who has not downloaded content data in the past. And terminates the process. In addition, the authentication unit 19 performs a process of permitting streaming playback only when a fee is paid, or performs a process of transmitting data prompting to download content data to the terminal device 20b.
[0074]
In step S13, the content distribution device 10 transmits a list of content data extracted from the database 17 from the transmission unit 16 to the terminal device 20b. When the reception unit 21 receives the list data of the content data that can be streamed and reproduced from the content distribution device 10 by the reception unit 21, the reproduction processing unit 24 performs a process such as converting a digital signal into an analog signal and performs processing such as conversion on the monitor 26. To be displayed. When the user selects one or a plurality of pieces of content data desired for streaming playback while viewing the list of content data that can be streamed and played displayed on the monitor 26, the terminal device 20b determines in step S14 that the user selects A streaming request for the selected content data is transmitted to the content distribution device 10 together with the selected content data selection signal.
[0075]
Upon receiving the streaming request for the selected content data together with the selection signal for the content data selected by the user transmitted from the terminal device 20b, the content distribution device 10 stores the content data in the search unit 13 based on the content ID included in the selection signal. It accesses the section 11 to read out content data corresponding to the selection signal, and outputs the read out content data to the streaming data generation section 15. In step S15, the content distribution device 10 performs compression / encryption processing on the content data in the streaming data generation unit 15, further divides the content data into packets, and creates a temporary file in packet units. Send the temporary file sequentially. At the same time, in the content distribution device 10, the registration update unit 18 accesses the database 17 and adds 1 to the number of times of streaming of the content data of the user ID performing the streaming reproduction.
[0076]
In step S17, the terminal device 20b causes the receiving unit 21 to sequentially download the streaming temporary file of the content data transmitted from the content distribution device 10 and sequentially store and reproduce the file in the buffer memory 23. Then, the temporary file whose reproduction has been completed is deleted from the buffer memory 23.
[0077]
Here, the details of the streaming reproduction process performed by the terminal device 20b will be described with reference to FIG. 10. In step S21, the terminal device 20b sequentially receives the temporary files sequentially transmitted from the content distribution device 10 by the receiving unit 21. Then, in step S22, these temporary files are sequentially stored in the buffer memory 23. In step S23, the terminal device 20b reads the N-th temporary file on the time axis. For example, at the start of streaming playback, first, the temporary file located first on the time axis is read out, and when compression-encryption is performed via the switching unit 24d, the temporary file is output to the encryption / decryption unit 24a. If not, it outputs to the decoder 24c. In step S24, the terminal device 20b decrypts the encryption using the decryption key data in the decryption unit 24a. Then, in step S25, the terminal device 20b expands the compression. Then, in step S26, the terminal device 20b performs demodulation and error correction processing. , D / A conversion, etc., and outputs audio data as reproduced sound from the speaker 25 and displays image data on the monitor 26.
[0078]
In step S27, the terminal device 20b determines whether or not the reproduced temporary file is the last file of the content data. If it is the last file, the terminal device 20b ends the process. The first temporary file is deleted from the buffer memory 23. In step S28, the terminal device 20b starts reading the (N + 1) th temporary file, and thereafter repeats the processing of steps S24 to S27.
[0079]
As described above, in the streaming reproduction, the temporary files downloaded to the buffer memory 23 are sequentially deleted when the reproduction is completed, so that the capacity of the recording medium is smaller than when the content data is downloaded. In streaming playback, temporary files that have been played are sequentially erased, and no data remains even after the playback of content data ends. Therefore, it is not possible to copy the played content data. It is possible to prevent a copy of the content data from being spread.
[0080]
Next, the process performed by the content distribution device 10 for the terminal device 20b to perform the streaming reproduction, specifically, the process from when the streaming request shown in FIG. 9 is received to when the content data to be streamed is read from the storage unit 11 Will be described.
[0081]
FIG. 11 is similar to the example of Table 1 above. When the content distribution device 10 receives the user ID from the terminal device 20b, in step S31, the content distribution device 10 accesses the database 17 by the authentication unit 19 based on the user ID. Then, it is determined whether the accessed user is a registered user. When the authentication unit 19 determines that the accessed user is a registered user, the authentication unit 19 extracts data such as a title related to the content data registered in the database 17 such as a title of the content data downloaded in the past with the user ID, and generates a list. Data is generated and transmitted from the transmission unit 28 to the terminal device 20b. When the user ID transmitted from the terminal device 20b is not registered in the database 17, the authentication unit 19 proceeds to step S34.
[0082]
In step S32, when the content distribution device 10 receives the streaming request of the selected content data together with the selection signal of the content data selected by the user transmitted from the terminal device 20b, the registration update unit 18 performs streaming streaming of the content data. Is determined to be less than or equal to a predetermined number. Then, when the number of times of streaming reproduction of the content data to be streamed is equal to or less than the predetermined number of times, the content distribution device 10 proceeds to step S33 and starts a data generation process for streaming reproduction. That is, the content distribution device 10 searches the content data based on the content ID of the content data to be streamed and reproduced from the terminal device 20b by the search unit 13, and sends the found content data to the streaming reproduction data generation unit 15. The content data is output, packetized, and sequentially transmitted from the transmission unit 28 to the terminal device 20b. When the process proceeds to step S33, no charging is performed, and the user can perform streaming reproduction free of charge.
[0083]
In step S32, when the registration updating unit 18 determines that the number of times of streaming reproduction has exceeded the predetermined number, the content distribution device 10 prohibits streaming reproduction or transmits a billing request to the terminal device 20b in step S34. I do. When prohibiting streaming reproduction, the content distribution device 10 transmits data notifying the user to the effect to the terminal device 20b from the transmission unit 28. At this time, the content distribution device 10 does not output the content data from the storage unit 11 to the streaming reproduction data generation unit 15. Further, the content distribution device 10 transmits to the terminal device 20b from the transmission unit 28 data indicating that the number of streaming times has exceeded the predetermined number and that the charging is to be newly performed when performing streaming reproduction, when making a new billing request. I do. Then, the content distribution device 10 receives the consent / non-consent data from the terminal device 20b, determines whether or not the user has accepted the billing request. If you do not agree, prohibit streaming playback.
[0084]
In step S31, when the content distribution device 10 determines that the user accessed by the authentication unit 19 is not a registered user, that is, a user who has not downloaded content data in the past, in step S35, the The data is transmitted from the transmission unit 28 to the terminal device 20b. Then, the content distribution device 10 receives the consent / non-consent data from the terminal device 20b, and determines whether or not the user has accepted the charging request. Then, when the content distribution device 10 accepts the charging request, the process proceeds to step S33 to permit streaming reproduction, and when the content distribution device 10 does not accept the charging request, the process proceeds to step S36 to prohibit streaming reproduction. This is because a user who has not downloaded content data in the past is not a person who purchased the content data, and there is no need to provide convenience to the user. Therefore, for example, the amount to be charged when an unregistered user attempts to perform streaming reproduction in step S34 is set to be slightly higher. Also, the streaming reproduction data is not stored in the terminal device 20b unlike the download data, and thus may be set lower than the amount of money at the time of download.
[0085]
The process performed by the content distribution device 10 for the terminal device 20b to perform the streaming reproduction, specifically, the process from when the streaming request shown in FIG. 9 is received to when the content data to be streamed is read from the storage unit 11 is performed. The following can also be performed. This example shows a case where charging based on Table 2 is performed. That is, as shown in FIG. 12, when receiving the user ID from the terminal device 20b in step S41, the content distribution device 10 accesses the database 17 in the authentication unit 19 based on the user ID in step S41, and It is determined whether or not the user who has performed is a registered user. When the authentication unit 19 determines that the accessed user is a registered user, the authentication unit 19 extracts information related to the content data registered in the database 17 such as the title of the content data downloaded in the past and generates list data. Then, this is transmitted from the transmission unit 28 to the terminal device 20b. If the user ID transmitted from the terminal device 20b is not registered in the database 17, the authentication unit 19 proceeds to step S45.
[0086]
In step S42, when the content distribution device 10 receives the streaming request of the selected content data together with the selection signal of the content data selected by the user transmitted from the terminal device 20b, the registration update unit 18 performs the streaming reproduction count of the content data. Is determined to be less than or equal to a predetermined number. When the number of times of streaming reproduction of the content data to be streamed is equal to or less than the predetermined number, the content distribution device 10 proceeds to step S43, and when the number exceeds the predetermined number, proceeds to step S45.
[0087]
When determining that the number of times of streaming reproduction of the content data to be streamed is equal to or less than the predetermined number, in step S43, the content distribution device 10 transmits, to the terminal device 20b, data indicating that a new billing is to be performed. Then, the content distribution device 10 receives the consent / non-consent data from the terminal device 20b, determines whether or not the user has accepted the billing request. When the user has accepted the billing request, the process proceeds to step S44 to perform streaming reproduction. Is permitted, and when the user does not accept the billing request, the process proceeds to step S46 to prohibit the streaming reproduction.
[0088]
In step S44, the content distribution device 10 searches the content data based on the content ID of the content data to be streamed and reproduced from the terminal device 20b by the search unit 13, and outputs the found content data to the streaming reproduction data generation unit. 15 and packetizes the content data, and sequentially transmits the packetized data from the transmission unit 28 to the terminal device 20b. Thus, the selected terminal device 20b performs streaming reproduction of the selected content data.
[0089]
If it is determined in step S41 that the user accessed by the authentication unit 19 is not a registered user, that is, a user who has not downloaded content data in the past, and if the number of times of streaming reproduction of content data to be streamed in step S42 is a predetermined number of times. Is exceeded, the content distribution device 10 transmits a billing request from the transmission unit 28 to the terminal device 20b in step S45. Then, the content distribution device 10 receives the consent / non-consent data from the terminal device 20b, and determines whether or not the user has accepted the charging request. Then, when the user accepts the billing request, the process proceeds to step S44, and the content distribution device 10 permits streaming reproduction. When the user does not accept the billing request, the process proceeds to step S46, and prohibits the streaming reproduction. Here, the amount charged in step S45 is set higher than the amount charged in step S43. This is because the charging performed in step S43 is for giving convenience to the user who has already downloaded the content data, and it is necessary to give such convenience to the user who has not purchased and downloaded the content data. This is to differentiate services between download users and non-download users.
[0090]
According to the content distribution system 1 configured as described above, a user who purchases desired content data and downloads the content data to the terminal device 20a owned by himself / herself accesses the content distribution device 10 from a different terminal device 20b, and is free of charge. Alternatively, content data downloaded at low cost can be streamed and enjoyed, and the convenience for the user can be improved. On the other hand, streaming reproduction is not stored in the terminal device 20b unlike download. Therefore, even if the user reproduces the content data for free or at a low price, it is possible to prevent the data from being illegally spread.
[0091]
Further, the content distribution system to which the present invention is applied can be configured as shown in FIG. In the content distribution system 31, the terminal device 20a has a function of reproducing the optical disk 5a of the package medium 5, and uploads the content ID recorded as the identification data of the content data recorded on the optical disk 5a to the content distribution device 10 together with the user ID. Things. Then, after registering in the content distribution device 10, the user can perform streaming reproduction for free or at low cost. In FIG. 13, a terminal device for reproducing the optical disk 5a and transmitting the user ID and the content ID is indicated by 20a, and a terminal device for streaming reproduction of the content data is indicated by 20b.
[0092]
The package medium 5 stores the optical disk 5 on which the content data is recorded, and is sold to a user at a record store or the like. The same situation occurs when the content data in the distribution system 1 is purchased and downloaded to the terminal device 20b. On the optical disk 5a of the package medium 5, a content ID is assigned and recorded for each content data recorded. The terminal device 20a reads the content ID from the optical disk 5a and transmits the content ID to the content distribution device 10 for registration along with the user ID.
[0093]
The terminal devices 20a and 20b will be described with reference to FIG. As shown in FIG. 14, the terminal devices 20a and 20b are characterized in that a mounting section 32 of the optical disk 5a is provided for the terminal devices 20a and 20b of the content distribution system 1. The mounting unit 32 includes a disk table on which the optical disk 5a is mounted, an optical pickup that irradiates the optical disk 5a with a light beam, and detects a reflected return light beam to read data. . When the optical disk 5a is mounted on the disk table, the optical disk 5a is rotated by a spindle motor so that the linear velocity or the angular velocity becomes constant. At the same time, the optical pickup irradiates a light beam sequentially from the lead-in area of the optical disk 5a, and reads out data by detecting the reflected return light beam. Note that the control unit 29 may extract the content ID of the recorded content data from the subcode of the read data, for example.
[0094]
Here, a terminal device 20a that transmits a content ID and a user ID to the content distribution device 10 will be described. The terminal device 20a is configured such that when a user inputs predetermined address data using the operation unit 27, When the user accesses the content distribution apparatus 10 that provides the content distribution service provided by the system 1, the receiving unit 21 downloads image data and the like constituting a web page for registering a user ID and a content ID, and downloads the web page. It is displayed on the monitor 26. When the user operates the operation unit 27, the user ID and the content ID of the content data recorded on the optical disk 5a of the purchased package medium 5 are input to the terminal device 20a. Then, the terminal device 20a transmits the user ID and one or more content IDs to the content distribution device 10 from the transmission unit 28. The operation of the terminal device 20b at the time of performing the streaming reproduction is the same as that of the terminal device 20b of the content distribution system 1, and thus the details are omitted.
[0095]
In the terminal device 20a, when the optical disk 5a is mounted on the mounting section 32, the spindle motor is driven to rotate the optical disk 5a integrally with the disk table. The content data recorded on the optical disk 5a is read by detecting the beam. When the content data read by the optical pickup is compressed and encrypted, the encryption is decrypted by the encryption / decryption unit 24a, input to the decompression unit 24b, subjected to the compression decompression process, and then decoded by the decoder 24c. Is output from the speaker 25 and the monitor 26. When the content data read by the optical pickup is not compressed and encrypted, the content data is input to the decoder 24c, subjected to a decoding process, output as reproduced sound from the speaker 25, and displayed on the monitor 26.
[0096]
On the other hand, the content distribution device used for the content distribution system 31 has the same configuration as the content distribution device 10 used for the content distribution system 1 except for the configuration of the database 17. Therefore, the configuration of the database 17 will be described. The database 17 includes, as fields, a user ID for identifying the user who purchased the package medium 5, a content ID for identifying the content data recorded on the optical disk 5a of the package medium 5 purchased by the user, and the user. The number of streaming times for counting the number of streaming times and the amount charged to the user are provided.
[0097]
Table 3 below shows an example in which streaming playback is provided free of charge to a user up to a predetermined number of times, and when the number of times exceeds the predetermined number, charging is performed every time streaming playback is performed.
[0098]
[Table 3]
[0099]
That is, Table 3 is an example in which streaming playback is free up to 5 times, and when the streaming playback is 6 times or more, $ 100 is charged per streaming playback. For example, “Bill” is a person who registered the content data “AAA” in the database 17 and has performed streaming reproduction six times so far, so that the number of times exceeds a predetermined number of times, and a charge for one streaming is made. The total charge is $ 100. Also, “John” is a person who registered the content data “CCC” in the database 17, and the number of streaming playbacks so far is one and the predetermined number of times is five or less. I have. In the example of Table 3, when the number of times of streaming becomes six or more, streaming may be prohibited instead of charging.
[0100]
Table 4 below shows that the user who purchased the package media 5 is charged for streaming reproduction up to a predetermined number of times at a first price, and when the number of times exceeds the predetermined number, the first price is charged each time the streaming reproduction is performed. An example of charging at a higher second price is shown.
[0101]
[Table 4]
[0102]
That is, Table 4 shows an example in which the streaming playback is $ 10 once for up to 5 times, and $ 100 per streaming playback for 6 or more times. For example, “Bill” is a person who has registered the content data “AAA” in the database 17 and has performed streaming reproduction six times so far, so that the number of streaming times of five or less is $ 50 ($ 10 × 5 times). ), The number of streaming times of 6 or more is $ 100 ($ 100 x 1), and the total billing amount is $ 150. Also, “John” is a person who registered the content data “CCC” in the database 17 and has performed streaming reproduction once so far. × 1), the total billing amount is $ 10. In the example of Table 4, when the number of times of streaming becomes six or more, streaming may be prohibited instead of charging at the third price.
[0103]
Note that, in the examples of Tables 3 and 4, an example has been described in which a threshold for starting charging or increasing the charging amount is provided when the number of streaming times exceeds a predetermined number, but this threshold is not necessarily provided. No need. When the threshold value is eliminated and the streaming reproduction can be performed free or inexpensively regardless of the number of times of streaming, the economic burden on the user can be further reduced, and the user can use it more easily.
[0104]
When the receiving unit 12 receives the user ID and the content ID transmitted from the terminal device 20a, the content distribution device 10 having the database 17 stores the user ID and the content ID to be downloaded in the registration updating unit 18. The information is associated and registered in the database 17.
[0105]
Next, a procedure for registering the user ID and the content ID of the content data recorded on the optical disk 5a of the purchased package media 5 in the content distribution device 10 using the terminal device 20a will be described with reference to FIG.
[0106]
When the user uses the operation unit 27 to input address data of a web page for user registration and performs a transmission operation, the terminal device 20a transmits a download request for the web page to the content distribution device 10 in step S51. In step S52, when receiving the download request of the web page for user registration transmitted from the terminal device 20a, the content distribution apparatus 10 reads out image data and the like constituting the web page for user registration from the storage unit 11, Is transmitted from the transmission unit 16 to the terminal device 20a via the network 2.
[0107]
When the receiving unit 21 receives the user registration web page from the content distribution device 10 at the receiving unit 21, the terminal unit 20a performs processing such as converting a digital signal to an analog signal at the reproduction processing unit 24, and displays it on the monitor 26. . In step S53, the user inputs the user ID and the content ID of the content data recorded on the optical disk 5a of the purchased package medium 5 using the operation unit 27. Of course, the terminal device 20a may rotate the optical disk 5a mounted on the mounting unit 32 by the spindle motor, read data by the optical pickup, and read the content ID from the subcode. Then, when the input of the user ID and the content ID is completed, the terminal device 20a transmits the user ID and the content ID to the content distribution device 10 from the transmission unit 28.
[0108]
When the receiving unit 12 receives the user ID and the content ID, the content distribution device 10 stores the user ID and the content ID in the database 17 by the registration updating unit 18 in step S54. In step S55, the content distribution device 10 generates registration completion data of the user ID and the content ID, and transmits the registration completion data from the transmission unit 16 to the terminal device 20a. Thus, the user can know that the user registration and the registration of the content ID have been completed.
[0109]
When streaming playback of content data recorded on the optical disk 5a of the package media 5 purchased by using a terminal device 20b different from the terminal device 20a, the same as in the case of the content distribution system 1 described above. Although the details are omitted, the user accesses the content distribution device 10 using the terminal device 20b, obtains a list of content data that can be streamed and reproduced by himself, and selects content data to be streamed and reproduced from the list. This is transmitted to the content distribution device 10. The content distribution device 10 is a registered user whose access is registered in the database 17, and when the user accepts the charging when charging is necessary, the content data is packetized and sequentially transmitted from the transmitting unit 16 to the terminal device 20b. Send. When the receiving unit 21 receives the streaming temporary file transmitted from the content distribution device 10 by the receiving unit 21, the terminal device 20 b temporarily stores the file in the buffer memory 23, performs a reproduction process in the reproduction processing unit 24, and performs the speaker 25 and the monitor. 26. The temporary files subjected to the streaming reproduction are sequentially deleted from the buffer memory 23 when the reproduction is completed.
[0110]
According to the content distribution system 31 configured as described above, a user who has purchased the package media 5 of the optical disk 5a in which desired content data is recorded accesses the content distribution device 10 from a different terminal device 20b and is free of charge or Streaming reproduction of content data downloaded at low cost can be enjoyed, and convenience to the user can be improved. On the other hand, streaming reproduction is not stored in the terminal device 20b unlike download. Therefore, even if the user reproduces the content data for free or at a low price, it is possible to prevent the data from being illegally spread.
[0111]
In the content distribution system 31, the recording medium of the package medium 5 purchased by the user is not limited to the optical disk 5a, but may be an IC card using a semiconductor memory as a recording medium, a magnetic disk, a magneto-optical disk, or an optical disk. May be a disk cartridge or the like containing the above-mentioned disk.
[0112]
As described above, the content distribution systems 1 and 31 to which the present invention is applied have been described, but the present invention is not limited to this, and these two systems may be combined. That is, when a user who downloads desired content data and a user who purchases package media access the content distribution apparatus 10 and request streaming playback, streaming playback can be performed free or inexpensively. May be given.
[0113]
【The invention's effect】
According to the present invention, in response to a request received by the receiving means, when a download request is made, the requested content data is read out from the storage means to generate download data, and when a streaming request is made, the request is not sent from the storage means. The content data is read to generate streaming data, the generated download data and streaming data are transmitted to the terminal device in response to the request received by the receiving unit, and the download data is transmitted from the transmitting unit. By performing a charging process at the time of transmission and making the streaming data transmitted from the transmission means free or cheaper than at the time of downloading, it is possible to provide convenience to the user who purchased the content data by downloading. Further, according to the present invention, similar convenience can be given to a user who has purchased package media.
[Brief description of the drawings]
FIG. 1 is a diagram illustrating a configuration of a content distribution system to which the present invention has been applied.
FIG. 2 is a block diagram of a content distribution device used in the content distribution system.
FIG. 3 is a block diagram of a streaming data generation unit of the content distribution device.
FIG. 4 is a diagram illustrating data for download.
FIG. 5 is a diagram illustrating data for streaming reproduction.
FIG. 6 is a block diagram of a terminal device used in the content distribution system.
FIG. 7 is a block diagram of a reproduction processing unit of the terminal device.
FIG. 8 is a flowchart illustrating a procedure for downloading content data.
FIG. 9 is a flowchart illustrating a procedure for streaming reproduction of content data.
FIG. 10 is a flowchart illustrating processing of the terminal device when streaming playback of content data is performed.
FIG. 11 is a flowchart illustrating processing of the content distribution device when a streaming request is received.
FIG. 12 is a flowchart illustrating another example of a process of the content distribution device when a streaming request is received.
FIG. 13 is a diagram illustrating another example of a content distribution system to which the present invention has been applied.
14 is a block diagram of a terminal device used in the content distribution system shown in FIG.
FIG. 15 is a flowchart illustrating a procedure for performing user registration in the content distribution system shown in FIG.
[Explanation of symbols]
1 content distribution system, 2 networks, 10 content distribution devices, 11 storage unit, 12 reception unit, 13 search unit, 14 download data generation unit, 15 streaming data generation unit, 16 transmission unit, 17 database, 18 registration update unit , 19 authentication unit, 20 terminal device, 21 reception unit, 22 memory, 23 buffer memory, 24 reproduction processing unit, 25 speaker, 26 monitor, 27 operation unit, 28 transmission unit, 29 control unit

Claims (22)

  1. Storage means for storing a plurality of content data;
    Receiving means for receiving a download request or a streaming request of one or more content data stored in the storage means from at least one terminal device,
    In response to the request received by the receiving means, in the case of the download request, the requested content data is read from the storage means to generate download data, and in the case of the streaming request, the storage means reads out the request from the storage means. Data generation means for reading the content data that has been generated and generating streaming data;
    Transmitting means for transmitting the download data and the streaming data generated by the data generating means to the terminal device in response to the request received by the receiving means;
    A content distribution apparatus comprising: accounting processing means for performing accounting processing when transmitting the download data from the transmission means, and not performing accounting processing when transmitting the streaming data from the transmission means.
  2. A database in which identification data of a user who has downloaded the content data stored in the storage unit is registered;
    Comparing the identification data of the user who transmitted the streaming request with the identification data registered in the database, and an authentication unit for authenticating the terminal device that transmitted the streaming request,
    2. The content distribution device according to claim 1, wherein the authentication unit permits transmission of streaming data of the content data in response to the streaming request only to a terminal device that has been authenticated.
  3. 2. The content distribution device according to claim 1, further comprising an encryption unit for encrypting the streaming data.
  4. Further, a counting means for counting the number of transmissions of streaming data for each identification data registered in the database,
    3. The content distribution apparatus according to claim 2, wherein the counting means prevents the accounting processing means from performing accounting processing until the number of times of transmission of the streaming data has reached a predetermined number.
  5. Accumulating a plurality of content data;
    Receiving a download request or a streaming request for the stored one or more content data from at least one terminal device;
    In response to the received request, in the case of the download request, the requested content data is read out to generate download data, and in the case of the streaming request, the requested content data is read out and the streaming data is generated. Generating,
    Transmitting the generated download data and streaming data to the terminal device in response to the request received by the receiving unit;
    A charging process when transmitting the download data, and not performing a charging process when transmitting the streaming data.
  6. Registering, in a database, identification data of a user who has downloaded the stored content data;
    Comparing the identification data of the user who transmitted the streaming request with the identification data registered in the database, and obtaining authentication of the terminal device that transmitted the streaming request;
    6. The method according to claim 5, further comprising the step of: when the authentication is successful, transmitting streaming data of the content data in response to the streaming request from the authenticated terminal device.
  7. The content distribution method according to claim 5, further comprising a step of encrypting the streaming data.
  8. Further, the method has a step of counting the number of times of transmission of streaming data for each identification data registered in the database,
    7. The content distribution method according to claim 6, wherein the charging process is not performed until the number of transmissions of the streaming data reaches a predetermined number.
  9. Storage means for storing a plurality of content data;
    Receiving means for receiving a download request or a streaming request of one or more content data stored in the storage means from at least one terminal device,
    In response to the request received by the receiving means, in the case of the download request, the requested content data is read from the storage means to generate download data, and in the case of the streaming request, the storage means reads out the request from the storage means. Data generation means for reading the content data that has been generated and generating streaming data;
    Transmitting means for transmitting the download data and the streaming data generated by the data generating means to the terminal device in response to the request received by the receiving means;
    A billing process at the first price when transmitting the download data from the transmitting unit, and a billing process at a second price lower than the first price when transmitting the streaming data from the transmitting unit. A content distribution device comprising a processing unit.
  10. A database in which identification data of a user who has downloaded the content data stored in the storage unit is registered;
    Comparing the identification data of the user who transmitted the streaming request with the identification data registered in the database, and an authentication unit for authenticating the terminal device that transmitted the streaming request,
    10. The content distribution device according to claim 9, wherein the authentication unit permits transmission of streaming data of the content data in response to the streaming request only to a terminal device that has been authenticated.
  11. 10. The content distribution device according to claim 9, further comprising an encryption unit for encrypting the streaming data.
  12. Further, a counting means for counting the number of transmissions of streaming data for each identification data registered in the database,
    11. The content distribution apparatus according to claim 10, wherein the counting unit performs the charging process at the second price until the number of transmissions of the streaming data reaches a predetermined number.
  13. Accumulating a plurality of content data;
    Receiving a download request or a streaming request for the stored one or more content data from at least one terminal device;
    In response to the received request, in the case of the download request, the requested content data is read out to generate download data, and in the case of the streaming request, the requested content data is read out and the streaming data is generated. Generating,
    Transmitting the generated download data and streaming data to the terminal device in response to the request received by the receiving unit;
    Performing a charging process when transmitting the download data, and performing a charging process at a second price lower than the first price when transmitting the streaming data.
  14. Registering, in a database, identification data of a user who has downloaded the stored content data;
    Comparing the identification data of the user who transmitted the streaming request with the identification data registered in the database, and obtaining authentication of the terminal device that transmitted the streaming request;
    14. The content distribution method according to claim 13, further comprising a step of transmitting streaming data of the content data in response to the streaming request from the terminal device which has been authenticated, when the authentication is obtained.
  15. 14. The content distribution method according to claim 13, further comprising a step of encrypting the streaming data.
  16. Further, the method has a step of counting the number of times of transmission of streaming data for each identification data registered in the database,
    15. The content distribution method according to claim 14, wherein the accounting process is performed at the second price until the number of transmissions of the streaming data reaches a predetermined number.
  17. A database for registering the content identification data of one or more content data to be owned by purchasing the package media in association with the owner identification data,
    Storage means for storing one or a plurality of content data recorded in the package medium,
    Receiving means for receiving a streaming request for one or more content data stored in the storage means from at least one terminal device;
    In response to the streaming request received by the receiving means, data generating means for reading the streaming-requested content data from the storage means and generating streaming data,
    The content identification data and the owner identification data transmitted from the terminal device and received by the receiving unit are compared with the content identification data and the owner identification data registered in the database, and the streaming request is transmitted. An authentication means for authenticating the transmitted owner;
    Transmitting means for transmitting the streaming data generated by the data generating means to the terminal device in response to the streaming request received by the receiving means, when the authentication is obtained by the authentication means;
    A content distribution apparatus comprising: charging means for performing a charging process at no cost or at a price lower than the purchase price of the package media when transmitting the streaming data from the transmitting means.
  18. 18. The content distribution device according to claim 17, further comprising an encryption unit for encrypting the streaming data.
  19. Further, a counting means for counting the number of times of transmitting the data for streaming of the content data for each owner identification data registered in the database,
    18. The content distribution apparatus according to claim 17, wherein said counting means performs charging processing at a free price or at a price lower than a purchase price of said package media by said charging processing means until the number of times of transmission of streaming data is a predetermined number of times.
  20. Registering the content identification data of one or more content data that is to be owned by purchasing the package media in a database in association with the owner identification data;
    Accumulating one or more content data recorded in the package medium;
    Receiving a streaming request for the stored one or more content data from at least one terminal device;
    In response to the received streaming request, reading the content data for which the streaming request has been made, and generating streaming data;
    The content identification data and the owner identification data transmitted from the terminal device and received are compared with the content identification data and the owner identification data registered in the database, and the ownership that transmitted the streaming request is compared. Certifying the person,
    When the authentication is obtained, transmitting the generated streaming data to the terminal device in response to the received streaming request;
    Performing a charging process at a free price or at a lower price than the purchase price of the package media when transmitting the streaming data.
  21. The content distribution method according to claim 20, further comprising a step of encrypting the streaming data.
  22. Further, the method further includes a step of counting the number of times of transmission of streaming data of content data for each owner identification data registered in the database,
    21. The content distribution method according to claim 20, wherein the charging process is performed at a free price or at a price lower than the purchase price of the package media until the number of times of transmission of the streaming data is a predetermined number.
JP2002166140A 2002-06-06 2002-06-06 Contents distribution device and method Pending JP2004013527A (en)

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Cited By (5)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
JP2006109198A (en) * 2004-10-07 2006-04-20 Vodafone Kk Streaming data reception reproduction terminal
JP2011508569A (en) * 2007-12-24 2011-03-10 クゥアルコム・インコーポレイテッドQualcomm Incorporated Adaptive streaming for on-demand wireless services
JP2011518521A (en) * 2008-04-17 2011-06-23 ソニー コーポレイション オブ アメリカ Dual type playback of multimedia content
JP2013037432A (en) * 2011-08-04 2013-02-21 Nomura Research Institute Ltd File distribution device
WO2014046023A1 (en) * 2012-09-21 2014-03-27 株式会社ディー・エヌ・エー Content distribution device

Cited By (9)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
JP2006109198A (en) * 2004-10-07 2006-04-20 Vodafone Kk Streaming data reception reproduction terminal
JP4638200B2 (en) * 2004-10-07 2011-02-23 ソフトバンクモバイル株式会社 Streaming data reception / playback terminal
JP2011508569A (en) * 2007-12-24 2011-03-10 クゥアルコム・インコーポレイテッドQualcomm Incorporated Adaptive streaming for on-demand wireless services
US9313245B2 (en) 2007-12-24 2016-04-12 Qualcomm Incorporated Adaptive streaming for on demand wireless services
JP2011518521A (en) * 2008-04-17 2011-06-23 ソニー コーポレイション オブ アメリカ Dual type playback of multimedia content
JP2014212558A (en) * 2008-04-17 2014-11-13 ソニー株式会社 Dual type reproduction of multi-media content
US9106802B2 (en) 2008-04-17 2015-08-11 Sony Corporation Dual-type of playback for multimedia content
JP2013037432A (en) * 2011-08-04 2013-02-21 Nomura Research Institute Ltd File distribution device
WO2014046023A1 (en) * 2012-09-21 2014-03-27 株式会社ディー・エヌ・エー Content distribution device

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