US20080200257A1 - Electronic value-operated and battery powered portable amusement device - Google Patents

Electronic value-operated and battery powered portable amusement device Download PDF

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Publication number
US20080200257A1
US20080200257A1 US12033534 US3353408A US2008200257A1 US 20080200257 A1 US20080200257 A1 US 20080200257A1 US 12033534 US12033534 US 12033534 US 3353408 A US3353408 A US 3353408A US 2008200257 A1 US2008200257 A1 US 2008200257A1
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Patent type
Prior art keywords
device
portable
amusement
currency
input
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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.)
Abandoned
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US12033534
Inventor
James R. Stelzer
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Merit Industries Inc
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Merit Industries Inc
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    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F13/00Video games, i.e. games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions
    • A63F13/90Constructional details or arrangements of video game devices not provided for in groups A63F13/20 or A63F13/25, e.g. housing, wiring, connections or cabinets
    • A63F13/92Video game devices specially adapted to be hand-held while playing
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F13/00Video games, i.e. games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions
    • A63F13/12Video games, i.e. games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions involving interaction between a plurality of game devices, e.g. transmisison or distribution systems
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F13/00Video games, i.e. games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions
    • A63F13/20Input arrangements for video game devices
    • A63F13/21Input arrangements for video game devices characterised by their sensors, purposes or types
    • A63F13/214Input arrangements for video game devices characterised by their sensors, purposes or types for locating contacts on a surface, e.g. floor mats or touch pads
    • A63F13/2145Input arrangements for video game devices characterised by their sensors, purposes or types for locating contacts on a surface, e.g. floor mats or touch pads the surface being also a display device, e.g. touch screens
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F13/00Video games, i.e. games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions
    • A63F13/70Game security or game management aspects
    • A63F13/73Authorising game programs or game devices, e.g. checking authenticity
    • GPHYSICS
    • G07CHECKING-DEVICES
    • G07FCOIN-FREED OR LIKE APPARATUS
    • G07F17/00Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services
    • G07F17/32Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services for games, toys, sports or amusements, e.g. casino games, online gambling or betting
    • GPHYSICS
    • G07CHECKING-DEVICES
    • G07FCOIN-FREED OR LIKE APPARATUS
    • G07F17/00Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services
    • G07F17/32Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services for games, toys, sports or amusements, e.g. casino games, online gambling or betting
    • G07F17/3202Hardware aspects of a gaming system, e.g. components, construction, architecture thereof
    • G07F17/3204Player-machine interfaces
    • G07F17/3206Player sensing means, e.g. presence detection, biometrics
    • GPHYSICS
    • G07CHECKING-DEVICES
    • G07FCOIN-FREED OR LIKE APPARATUS
    • G07F17/00Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services
    • G07F17/32Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services for games, toys, sports or amusements, e.g. casino games, online gambling or betting
    • G07F17/3202Hardware aspects of a gaming system, e.g. components, construction, architecture thereof
    • G07F17/3216Construction aspects of a gaming system, e.g. housing, seats, ergonomic aspects
    • G07F17/3218Construction aspects of a gaming system, e.g. housing, seats, ergonomic aspects wherein at least part of the system is portable
    • GPHYSICS
    • G07CHECKING-DEVICES
    • G07FCOIN-FREED OR LIKE APPARATUS
    • G07F17/00Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services
    • G07F17/32Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services for games, toys, sports or amusements, e.g. casino games, online gambling or betting
    • G07F17/3225Data transfer within a gaming system, e.g. data sent between gaming machines and users
    • G07F17/3232Data transfer within a gaming system, e.g. data sent between gaming machines and users wherein the operator is informed
    • G07F17/3237Data transfer within a gaming system, e.g. data sent between gaming machines and users wherein the operator is informed about the players, e.g. profiling, responsible gaming, strategy/behavior of players, location of players
    • GPHYSICS
    • G07CHECKING-DEVICES
    • G07FCOIN-FREED OR LIKE APPARATUS
    • G07F17/00Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services
    • G07F17/32Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services for games, toys, sports or amusements, e.g. casino games, online gambling or betting
    • G07F17/3241Security aspects of a gaming system, e.g. detecting cheating, device integrity, surveillance
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F13/00Video games, i.e. games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions
    • A63F13/20Input arrangements for video game devices
    • A63F13/21Input arrangements for video game devices characterised by their sensors, purposes or types
    • A63F13/216Input arrangements for video game devices characterised by their sensors, purposes or types using geographical information, e.g. location of the game device or player using GPS
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F2300/00Features of games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions, e.g. on a television screen, showing representations related to the game
    • A63F2300/40Features of games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions, e.g. on a television screen, showing representations related to the game characterised by details of platform network
    • A63F2300/403Connection between platform and handheld device
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F2300/00Features of games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions, e.g. on a television screen, showing representations related to the game
    • A63F2300/40Features of games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions, e.g. on a television screen, showing representations related to the game characterised by details of platform network
    • A63F2300/404Features of games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions, e.g. on a television screen, showing representations related to the game characterised by details of platform network characterized by a local network connection
    • A63F2300/405Features of games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions, e.g. on a television screen, showing representations related to the game characterised by details of platform network characterized by a local network connection being a wireless ad hoc network, e.g. Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, Pico net
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F2300/00Features of games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions, e.g. on a television screen, showing representations related to the game
    • A63F2300/50Features of games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions, e.g. on a television screen, showing representations related to the game characterized by details of game servers
    • A63F2300/55Details of game data or player data management
    • A63F2300/5586Details of game data or player data management for enforcing rights or rules, e.g. to prevent foul play

Abstract

A portable amusement device has a display and is configured to operate at least one electronic game. The portable amusement device is operated by a touchscreen and includes a battery and a currency input. The portable amusement device is operable by a user upon receipt by the currency input of at least one of coins, currency, a credit card/debit card, and a Personal Identification Number (PIN). An amusement system includes a portable amusement device configured to operate at least one electronic game and having a display, a touchscreen, and a battery. The system also includes a docking station configured to receive the portable amusement device. The docking station includes a currency input. The portable amusement device is removable from the docking station only upon receipt by the currency input of at least one of coins, currency, a credit card/debit card, and a PIN.

Description

    CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS
  • [0001]
    This Application claims priority to U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 60/890,287, filed on Feb. 16, 2007, entitled “Electronic Value-Operated and Battery-Powered Portable Amusement Device.”
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • [0002]
    An embodiment of the present invention relates generally to an electronic amusement device, and more particularly, to a battery-powered portable electronic amusement device having an input for receiving currency to initiate use of the portable amusement device.
  • [0003]
    Amusement devices having electronic games for computers and touchscreens or other types of amusement devices are generally well known in the art. Amusement devices, such as game machines, which allow a user to select games from a video display are well known in the art, such as those disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 4,856,787 (“Itkis”); U.S. Pat. No. 5,575,717 (“Houriet, Jr., et al.”); U.S. Pat. No. 5,743,799 (“Houriet, Jr., et al.”), the entire contents of which are incorporated by reference herein, each of which shows a touchscreen for making a game selection from a menu of games. Such game machines or amusement devices typically operate upon input of currency (i.e., coin, token, paper money, credit/debit cards or the like) and are installed in locations such as bars, restaurants, airports, shopping malls, video arcades, casinos or the like. The game choices may include card games, sports games, games of skill, games of chance, action games, trivia games or the like.
  • [0004]
    Portable, battery-operated gaming devices are similarly well-known in the art. Typically a game is selected by inserting a corresponding cartridge into the device. Conventional portable gaming devices are now occasionally equipped with a touchscreen or touch pad, such as the Nintendo DS, commercially available from Nintendo of America Inc., Redmond, Wash. Other devices, such as PDAs, may also include games as an option to the user. These devices are generally affordable to the average consumer and once purchased along with one or more games may be played for free. Such devices generally provide an advantage to the user over the installed game machines described above. Portability allows a user to remain in a seat to play a game rather than risk losing the seat while standing at the game machine. There is no time spent waiting for other users to finish their turns. The user is generally more free to begin or cease play at his or her convenience. However, the customer must supply the device, requiring transport to and from the desired location, which may be inconvenient and subjects the device to risk of loss or theft.
  • [0005]
    Additionally, revenue is lost when customers choose to play their own portable gaming devices rather than the amusement devices installed in public/private establishments. Providing common portable gaming devices to customers is simply not an alternative. The devices lack any mechanism for requiring accurate currency input per game or accurate charging per minute used. The risk of theft of such devices is also a concern.
  • [0006]
    It is desirable to provide a portable amusement device that enables the collection of revenue in connection with its use, while still affording the customer the advantages and convenience of typical portable gaming devices.
  • BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • [0007]
    Briefly stated, an embodiment of the present invention comprises a portable amusement device having a display and being configured to operate at least one electronic game. The portable amusement device is operated by a touchscreen and includes a battery and a currency input. The portable amusement device is operable by a user upon receipt by the currency input of at least one of coins, currency, a credit card/debit card, and a Personal Identification Number (PIN). Additional features may optionally be added, such as security mechanisms, for example.
  • [0008]
    Another embodiment of the present invention comprises a system for providing entertainment to a user. The system includes a portable amusement device configured to operate at least one electronic game and having a display, a touchscreen, and a battery. The system also includes a docking station configured to receive the portable amusement device. The docking station includes a currency input. The portable amusement device is removable from the docking station only upon receipt by the currency input of at least one of coins, currency, a credit card/debit card, and a PIN.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • [0009]
    The foregoing summary, as well as the following detailed description of preferred embodiments of the invention, will be better understood when read in conjunction with the appended drawings. For the purpose of illustrating the invention, there are shown in the drawings embodiments which are presently preferred. It should be understood, however, that the invention is not limited to the precise arrangements and instrumentalities shown.
  • [0010]
    FIG. 1 is a front elevational view of a portable amusement device in accordance with a preferred embodiment of the present invention;
  • [0011]
    FIG. 2 is a front elevational view of a portable amusement device docked in a docking station in accordance with another preferred embodiment of the present invention;
  • [0012]
    FIG. 3 is a schematic block diagram of a portable amusement device in accordance with embodiments of the present invention; and
  • [0013]
    FIG. 4 is a schematic block diagram of wireless connectivity and a security arrangement in accordance with preferred embodiments of the present invention.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
  • [0014]
    Certain terminology is used in the following description for convenience only and is not limiting. The words “right”, “left”, “lower”, and “upper” designate directions in the drawings to which reference is made. The words “inwardly” and “outwardly” refer to directions toward and away from, respectively, the geometric center of the portable amusement device and designated parts thereof. The terminology includes the above-listed words, derivatives thereof, and words of similar import. Additionally, the words “a” and “an”, as used in the claims and in the corresponding portions of the specification, mean “at least one.” Further, the terms “coin” or “currency” should not be construed as limiting and can be used herein to mean all forms of coin and paper currency from any country as well as proprietary tokens, game cards, credit cards, debit cards, chits, or other representative forms of credit and/or payment.
  • [0015]
    Referring to the drawings in detail, wherein like reference numerals indicate like elements throughout, there is shown in FIG. 1 a first preferred embodiment of a portable amusement device 10. The portable amusement device 10 includes a housing 12 and display 14. The housing 12 is preferably ruggedized to resist breakage when dropped during normal use and may be waterproof and/or submersible to prevent water damage in the event the portable amusement device 10 is accidentally splashed and/or submerged in liquid. Preferably, the display 14 is a flatscreen, touchscreen display 14. The touchscreen display 14 may be a liquid crystal display (LCD), but the touchscreen display 14 may utilize other touchscreen technologies which provide a reduced depth, flatscreen display. A controller U1 (see FIG. 3) is coupled to the display 14 to display and control electronic games, music, video, multi-media applications, or the like. The housing 12 may also include one or more speakers 18 to facilitate audio output from the portable amusement device 10 during use. The portable amusement device 10 is preferably powered by a battery 32 (see FIG. 3). The battery 36 may be a rechargeable battery such as a Nickel-Cadmium (NiCd), Lithium-ion (Li-ion), or the like, or may not be rechargeable in some applications.
  • [0016]
    The portable amusement device 10 includes a currency/value input 16. Once a user enters credit and/or payment via the currency/value input 16, the portable amusement device 10 is activated for use. The currency/value input 16 may be one of a magnetic stripe reader/writer (e.g. credit card reader), a paper money slot, a coin slot, a keypad for the input of a PIN code, or the like. The currency/value input 16 is preferably a magnetic stripe reader, as shown in FIG. 1, in order to decrease the volume and weight of the portable amusement device 10. Alternatively, the currency/value input 16 may be a Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) reader, a bar code reader, an indicia reader, or the like. The currency/value input 16 may read smart cards, pre-stored value cards, cellular phones, digital certificates, tokens, or the like, and need not be limited to conventional currency or money.
  • [0017]
    The magnetic stripe reader 16 in FIG. 1 is situated on a side of the housing 12. However, the currency/value input 16 may be placed in any orientation on the portable amusement device 10 that facilitates convenient use. Similarly, more than one currency/value input 16 may be used on the portable amusement device 10 if desired. Likewise, the function of the currency/value input 16 may be realized through the touchscreen display 14 using, e.g., a digital wallet or the like.
  • [0018]
    FIG. 3 shows diagrammatically various components that may be incorporated into the portable amusement device 10 in accordance with preferred embodiments of the present invention. The controller U1 and associated memory U2 control operation of the portable amusement device 10, including the operation of one or more electronic games. The at least one game may optionally be stored on a hard disk drive 34 housed within portable amusement device 10. Preferably, the portable amusement device 10 is a “thin client”, meaning no hard disk drive 34 is located on the portable amusement device 10. Instead, the games and other applications can be stored on a local or remote server 24 (see FIG. 4) in communication with the portable amusement device 10 via a Radio Frequency (RF) modem 26 and associated antenna 28. This configuration further reduces the weight of the portable amusement device 10 and decreases the strain on the battery 32 to allow for longer use.
  • [0019]
    As an alternative to storing applications on a local server 24, the portable amusement device 10 may be equipped with an embedded web browser, thus allowing games and other applications to be run from a remote internet server (not shown). As an additional feature to the portable amusement device 10, the web browser may also allow users to surf the internet to check e-mail or other web sites.
  • [0020]
    The RF modem 26 and antenna 28 are preferably configured to operate under Wi-Fi standards, such as an 802.11x wireless standard, for communication to the local server. The RF modem 26 can also be utilized to optionally provide Voice over IP (VoIP), allowing a user of the portable amusement device 10 to make phone calls via the portable amusement device 10. A microphone 42 is provided on the housing 12 that may be used in connection with the speakers. Alternatively, the portable amusement device 10 may be Bluetooth (Bluetooth is a registered trademark of Bluetooth SIG, Inc., Bellevue, Wash.) enabled or infrared (IR) capable, allowing a user to provide his or her own mobile phone headset or other peripheral device as a means to place a phone call. The portable amusement device 10 may also be enabled with an instant messaging (IM) service for real-time communication with other users of the portable amusement device 10 or other parties using the same IM service. Wireless security is recommended, such as Media Access Control (MAC) ID filtering, Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) encryption, or more advanced techniques to prevent unauthorized users from accessing the wireless network established specifically for the portable amusement device 10.
  • [0021]
    The portable amusement device 10 may optionally include a communication port 30, which is preferably a Universal Serial Bus (USB) port. This communication port 30 enables users to upload or download data from personal devices such as portable flash drives. Often a user creates an “avatar” (a digital self-representation) or personality for use during gameplay. The communication port 30 is also useful for games that allow a user to accumulate skill points or the like. A user may wish to keep a record of the acquired points on a writable memory.
  • [0022]
    An alternative input mechanism 36 may also be provided. The alternative input 36 may take the form of, for example, a bar code reader, an RFID reader, a magnetic stripe reader, or the like. The alternative input 36 may be used for identification purposes, such as scanning information from a driver's license, credit card, or other ID. Coupons or special game codes may also be entered in a similar fashion. The alternative input 36 may also be a digital camera for taking photographs. Photographs taken by the user may be e-mailed, downloaded via the communication port 30, or sent to a remote print station (not shown).
  • [0023]
    The portable amusement device 10 may also be used as a pager. For example, a user may be notified via the portable amusement device 10 that a table is available for seating or that a message is waiting for the user. The page may be sent to the display 14 to alert the user. However, this may interfere with the user's gameplay. It is more preferable to page the user using indicator lights 38 and/or a tactile element 40 (e.g., a vibrational alert), thereby providing the least amount of distraction to the user while still delivering the intended message. The indicator lights 38 and tactile element 40 may also be used to enhance gameplay. Additionally, the portable amusement device 10 may be configured to provide information to the user regarding table availability. For example, the portable amusement device 10 may provide the position of the user in a queue for receiving a table. Alternatively, the user may be provided with an estimated time until a table will be available for seating. The position and time are both preferably updated regularly to reflect the most current status of the user's wait for a table.
  • [0024]
    As described earlier, the display 14 includes a touchscreen functionality 44 to provide an interface between the user and the controller U1. Aside from operating games, the portable amusement device 10 can be used for other functions related to atmosphere or convenience of the establishment where the portable amusement device 10 is offered. For example, taverns often include a local music system, such as a traditional or digital jukebox, to provide musical enjoyment to the customers. The portable amusement device 10 may be configured to communicate with the local music system via the local server or otherwise to enable the user to select music to be played. Alternatively, the portable amusement device 10 may be equipped to play the music through the speakers 18 rather than throughout the whole establishment. The portable amusement device 10 can similarly enable video on demand services. The portable amusement device 10 may also be used to place food or drink orders. A kitchen or bartender can receive orders from the menu directly along with a table number for delivery. Conversely, the portable amusement device 10 may also be used to pay the bill at the end of the meal via one of the inputs such as the currency/value input 16, alternative input 36, and the like.
  • [0025]
    The portable amusement device 10 is preferably enabled to allow multiple users with multiple devices 10 to play against one another head-to-head or play cooperatively. Users can challenge one another using features of the portable amusement device 10 such as IM or VoIP as described above. Additionally, in the embodiment where the games are stored on an internet server, a user of the portable amusement device 10 may compete head-to-head with players logged on remotely. The portable amusement device 10 is also preferably tournament-enabled for tournament-style games, where users may be rewarded based on scoring or the like.
  • [0026]
    FIG. 2 shows an alternative embodiment of the present invention. The portable amusement device 10 is placed in a docking station 20 and is locked in place. In addition to providing the capability of recharging the battery 32 of the portable amusement device 10, the docking station may also provide the method of generating revenue. Rather than placing the currency/value input 16 on the portable amusement device 10, one or more currency inputs, such as a magnetic stripe reader 161, may be placed on the docking station 20. Removal of the portable amusement device 10 from the docking station 20 for play is facilitated only by the tendering of currency by the user to the input 161. The receipt of an appropriate amount of currency by the docking station 20 releases the lock on the portable amusement device 10. In FIG. 2, for example, the docking station 20 is shown with the magnetic stripe card reader 161 and a keypad 162. While it is preferred to have the currency input 161 on the docking station 20 rather than on the portable amusement device 10, thereby decreasing the size and weight of the portable amusement device 10, it may be desirable to incorporate a currency input on both the portable amusement device 10 and the docking station 20.
  • [0027]
    In various embodiments of the present invention, loss prevention is preferable for permitting use of portable value-operated devices. An anti-theft system may therefore be included with the portable amusement device 10. Several examples are shown in FIG. 4. Two portable amusement devices 101 and 102 are shown in relation to local server 24. A theft alarm 46, illustrated in FIG. 4 as having a blinking light associated with each portable amusement device 10, is communicatively coupled to the server 24. The server 24 establishes a wireless network area, represented by the shaded circle.
  • [0028]
    While a portable amusement device such as 101 remains within the physical area of the network, the theft alarm 46 remains dormant for that portable amusement device 101. However, once a user strays outside the network area with portable amusement device 102, or the server 24 is otherwise no longer able to communicate with the portable amusement device 102, the theft alarm 46 is activated, alerting personnel that theft may be in progress. Alternatively, the portable amusement device 102 may be equipped to deactivate when the portable amusement device 102 can no longer communicate with the server 24, rendering the portable amusement device 102 useless until returned. As yet another alternative, the portable amusement device 10 may be equipped with Global Positioning System (GPS) capability or RF capability to constantly provide a location to personnel.
  • [0029]
    It will be appreciated by those skilled in the art that changes could be made to the embodiments described above without departing from the broad inventive concept thereof. It is understood, therefore, that this invention is not limited to the particular embodiments disclosed, but it is intended to cover modifications within the spirit and scope of the present invention as defined by the appended claims.

Claims (21)

  1. 1. A portable amusement device having a display and being configured to operate at least one electronic game, the amusement device comprising:
    (a) a touchscreen on the display for operating the portable amusement device;
    (b) a battery; and
    (c) a currency input, the portable amusement device being operable by a user upon receipt by the currency input of at least one of coins, currency, a credit card/debit card, and a Personal Identification Number (PIN).
  2. 2. The portable amusement device of claim 1, further comprising an anti-theft system.
  3. 3. The portable amusement device of claim 2, wherein the anti-theft system sounds an alert when the device is outside of a predefined area.
  4. 4. The portable amusement device of claim 2, wherein the anti-theft system deactivates the device when the device is outside of a predefined area.
  5. 5. The portable amusement device of claim 1, further comprising at least one communication port.
  6. 6. The portable amusement device of claim 5, wherein the at least one communication port is a Universal Serial Bus (USB).
  7. 7. The portable amusement device of claim 1, wherein the currency input is one of a magnetic stripe reader, a paper money slot, a coin slot, and a keypad.
  8. 8. The portable amusement device of claim 1, wherein the device is a thin client communicating to at least one of a local server and an internet server.
  9. 9. The portable amusement device of claim 1, wherein the device has Global Postitioning System (GPS) location capability.
  10. 10. The portable amusement device of claim 1, wherein the device communicates wirelessly.
  11. 11. The portable amusement device of claim 1, wherein the device is configured to select music to be played on a local music system.
  12. 12. The portable amusement device of claim 1, wherein at least one of music and video is selectable and playable on the device.
  13. 13. The portable amusement device of claim 1, wherein the device is configured to order food.
  14. 14. The portable amusement device of claim 1, wherein the device is configured to browse the internet.
  15. 15. The portable amusement device of claim 1, further comprising at least one of an Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) reader, a bar code reader, and a digital camera.
  16. 16. The portable amusement device of claim 1, wherein the device is configured for at least one of messaging and voice communication.
  17. 17. The portable amusement device of claim 1, wherein the device is configured for at least one of head-to-head, cooperative, and tournament play.
  18. 18. The portable amusement device of claim 1, wherein the device is configured to alert the user that a table is available for seating.
  19. 19. The portable amusement device of claim 1, wherein the device is configured to provide to the user information regarding at least one of a position of the user in a queue for being seated at a table and an estimated time before a table will be available for seating.
  20. 20. A system for providing entertainment to a user, the system comprising:
    (a) a portable amusement device configured to operate at least one electronic game, the device including a display, a touchscreen, and a battery; and
    (b) a docking station configured to receive the portable device, the docking station including a currency input, the device being removable from the docking station only upon receipt by the currency input of at least one of coins, currency, a credit card/debit card, and a Personal Identification Number (PIN).
  21. 21. The system of claim 19, wherein the currency input is one of a magnetic stripe reader, a paper money slot, a coin slot, and a keypad.
US12033534 2007-02-16 2008-02-19 Electronic value-operated and battery powered portable amusement device Abandoned US20080200257A1 (en)

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Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
US89028707 true 2007-02-16 2007-02-16
US12033534 US20080200257A1 (en) 2007-02-16 2008-02-19 Electronic value-operated and battery powered portable amusement device

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US12033534 US20080200257A1 (en) 2007-02-16 2008-02-19 Electronic value-operated and battery powered portable amusement device

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