WO2001022749A1 - Pda and system acquisition mode and method for wireless communication device - Google Patents

Pda and system acquisition mode and method for wireless communication device Download PDF

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Publication number
WO2001022749A1
WO2001022749A1 PCT/US2000/024628 US0024628W WO0122749A1 WO 2001022749 A1 WO2001022749 A1 WO 2001022749A1 US 0024628 W US0024628 W US 0024628W WO 0122749 A1 WO0122749 A1 WO 0122749A1
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WO
WIPO (PCT)
Prior art keywords
mode
handset
processor
pda
system
Prior art date
Application number
PCT/US2000/024628
Other languages
French (fr)
Inventor
Jong T. Chung
Byung Ruyl Kang
Original Assignee
Neopoint, Inc.
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
Priority to US39937799A priority Critical
Priority to US09/399,377 priority
Application filed by Neopoint, Inc. filed Critical Neopoint, Inc.
Publication of WO2001022749A1 publication Critical patent/WO2001022749A1/en

Links

Classifications

    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04WWIRELESS COMMUNICATION NETWORKS
    • H04W52/00Power management, e.g. TPC [Transmission Power Control], power saving or power classes
    • H04W52/02Power saving arrangements
    • H04W52/0209Power saving arrangements in terminal devices
    • H04W52/0261Power saving arrangements in terminal devices managing power supply demand, e.g. depending on battery level
    • H04W52/0274Power saving arrangements in terminal devices managing power supply demand, e.g. depending on battery level by switching on or off the equipment or parts thereof
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04MTELEPHONIC COMMUNICATION
    • H04M1/00Substation equipment, e.g. for use by subscribers; Analogous equipment at exchanges
    • H04M1/72Substation extension arrangements; Cordless telephones, i.e. devices for establishing wireless links to base stations without route selecting
    • H04M1/725Cordless telephones
    • H04M1/72519Portable communication terminals with improved user interface to control a main telephone operation mode or to indicate the communication status
    • H04M1/72522With means for supporting locally a plurality of applications to increase the functionality
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04WWIRELESS COMMUNICATION NETWORKS
    • H04W52/00Power management, e.g. TPC [Transmission Power Control], power saving or power classes
    • H04W52/02Power saving arrangements
    • H04W52/0209Power saving arrangements in terminal devices
    • H04W52/0251Power saving arrangements in terminal devices using monitoring of local events, e.g. events related to user activity
    • H04W52/0254Power saving arrangements in terminal devices using monitoring of local events, e.g. events related to user activity detecting a user operation or a tactile contact or a motion of the device
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04WWIRELESS COMMUNICATION NETWORKS
    • H04W88/00Devices specially adapted for wireless communication networks, e.g. terminals, base stations or access point devices
    • H04W88/02Terminal devices
    • YGENERAL TAGGING OF NEW TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENTS; GENERAL TAGGING OF CROSS-SECTIONAL TECHNOLOGIES SPANNING OVER SEVERAL SECTIONS OF THE IPC; TECHNICAL SUBJECTS COVERED BY FORMER USPC CROSS-REFERENCE ART COLLECTIONS [XRACs] AND DIGESTS
    • Y02TECHNOLOGIES OR APPLICATIONS FOR MITIGATION OR ADAPTATION AGAINST CLIMATE CHANGE
    • Y02DCLIMATE CHANGE MITIGATION TECHNOLOGIES IN INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGIES [ICT], I.E. INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGIES AIMING AT THE REDUCTION OF THIR OWN ENERGY USE
    • Y02D70/00Techniques for reducing energy consumption in wireless communication networks

Abstract

A wireless communication handset having PDA functionality is configured to enter a PDA mode and a system acquisition mode. A handset processor sets a first timer (204) and monitors the keypad for input (206). Upon expiration of the timer (208), the processor and receiver module are powered to enter the system acquisition mode (210) and search for a system frequency. Upon detection of keypad input (206), the processor is powered to enter the PDA mode and permit use of the PDA functionality. When in PDA mode, the processor sets a second timer and returns the handset to a low-power sleep mode (202) if keypad input is not received before expiration of the second timer (220). If the received keypad input is the call 'send' key, the keypad input is ignored unless the call is an emergency call (222). The handset is otherwise maintained in the low-power sleep mode.

Description

PDA AND SYSTEM ACQUISITION MODE AND METHOD FOR

WIRELESS COMMUNICATION DEVICE

Field of the Invention The present invention relates generally to radio or wireless communications and, more particularly, relates to a PDA and system acquisition mode and method for a wireless communication device.

Background of the Invention The advent of wireless personal communications devices has revolutionized the telecommunications industry. Cellular, PCS and other services provide wireless personal communications to businesses and individuals at home, in the office, on the road, and any other locations the wireless network reaches. Wireless telephone subscribers no longer have to use pay telephones along the road, or wait until they return home or to the office to check messages and return important business calls. Instead, wireless subscribers carry out their day to day business from their cars, from the jobsite, while walking along the airport concourse, and just about anywhere their signals are accessible.

Thus, it is no surprise that since the introduction of the cellular telephone service, the number of wireless telephone subscribers has increased steadily. Today, the number of wireless telephone subscribers is staggering and still growing rapidly. In fact, many households have multiple wireless telephones in addition to their conventional land-line services.

With a market of this size, there is fierce competition among hardware manufacturers and service providers. In an attempt to lure customers, most providers offer handsets with desirable features or attributes such as small size, light weight, longer battery life, speed dial, and so forth. Many recent additions to the marketplace include multi-functional handsets that even provide pocket-organizer functions integrated into the wireless handset. Most manufacturers, however, are still scrambling to add new features to their communication devices to snare a portion of this booming market.

The use of wireless handsets in conjunction with air travel raises its own subset of issues. Sending and receiving calls while in flight is typically prohibited, due to the potential for interference with the aircraft's communication systems. Handsets currently being developed, such as the "Neopoint 1000" handset of the present assignee, have PDA

("Personal Digital Assistant") capabilities in addition to communication capabilities. It would be advantageous to be able to utilize the PDA capabilities of a handset while flying without creating the potential for sending or receiving a phone call. Additionally, when flying from one location to another and using a CDMA handset or mobile station, it is necessary to search for and acquire the system frequency at the destination. This is a time consuming operation, and might occupy as many as ten minutes upon arrival at the destination. It would be advantageous to perform this operation while flying, with a minimum of power consumption, so that the system is already acquired upon arrival at the destination.

Summary of the Invention In one embodiment of the present invention, a wireless communication handset having PDA functionality is provided. The handset has a processor, and a display, a keypad, a transmitter module coupled to said processor, and a receiver module coupled to the processor. The handset also includes a computer program product executable on the processor that enables the processor to enter a PDA mode and a system acquisition mode. The computer program product includes program code logic that sets a first timer

Tl and monitors the keypad for input. Upon expiration of the timer Tl, the processor and receiver module are powered to enter the system acquisition mode and search for a system frequency. Upon detection of keypad input, the processor is powered to enter the PDA mode and permit use of the PDA functionality. If the handset is not in system acquisition or PDA mode, it is maintained in a low-power sleep mode.

In another embodiment of the present invention, a method for providing a PDA mode and a system acquisition mode is provided. The method includes the following steps: setting a first timer T 1 ; monitoring the keypad for input; entering the system acquisition mode and searching for a system frequency upon expiration of the timer Tl; entering the PDA mode and permitting use of PDA functionality provided by the handset if keypad input is detected; and maintaining the handset in a low-power sleep mode if it is not in system acquisition mode or PDA mode.

In one implementation, when in system acquisition mode, a frequency pointer is increased if the system frequency was not acquired on a previous search, and is kept the same if the system frequency was acquired on the previous search. In a further implementation, when in PDA mode, a second timer T2 is set and the handset is returned to the sleep mode if keypad input is not received before expiration of the timer T2.

Additionally, in PDA mode, if the received keypad input is the call 'send' key, the keypad input is ignored and the handset is returned to the sleep mode unless the call is an emergency call. Objects and advantages of the present invention include any of the foregoing, singly or in combination. Further objects and advantages will be apparent to those of ordinary skill in the art, or will be set forth in the following disclosure.

Brief Description of the Drawings

The present invention is described with reference to the accompanying drawings. In the drawings, like reference numbers indicate identical or functionally similar elements, and

Figure 1 is a diagram illustrating a CDMA mobile station or handset. Figure 2 is a flowchart illustrating a PDA mode and method according to the present invention.

Figure 3 is a flowchart illustrating a system acquisition mode and method according to the present invention.

Figure 4 is a block diagram illustrating a processor-based system.

Detailed Description of Preferred Embodiments 1. Example Environment

Before describing the invention in detail, it is useful to describe an example environment in which the invention can be implemented. One example environment is a handset or communication device operating within a wireless communication network such as, for example, a cellular, GSM, PCS or radio communication network. Wireless communication devices embodying the present invention can be implemented in various configurations and architectures. Typically, a wireless communication device will include a keypad for control of the device and data entry, and a display for displaying relevant information. An example wireless communication device 100 is illustrated in Figure 1.

Communication device 100 is presented for illustrative purposes only; implementation of the invention is not dependent on any particular device architecture or communication network. Device 100 includes a central processing unit (CPU) 104, a speaker 106, a display

108, a keypad 110, a transmitter 112, a receiver 114, a microphone 116, a power source

(not shown), and an antenna 120. Device 100 is typically a mobile device such as a handheld handset or an integrated vehicle phone. In the present application, device 100 is envisioned as a mobile station or handset operating within a CDMA ("Code Division Multiple Access") based communications system. It is configured to communicate with other communications devices such as base station 122. Base station 122 is typically within a geographic area known as a "cell" and handles communications for all wireless devices within the cell.

Processor 104 directs the overall operation of device 100. A computer program or set of instructions is typically coded or otherwise implemented on the processor to enable the processor to carry out the device operation. A memory (not shown) may be provided that interfaces with processor 104, stores program code, and provides storage space for data useful in executing the program code and carrying out the device functions. The memory may be implemented as ROM, RAM or any other convenient memory format. The features and functionality of the invention described below may be implemented using hardware, software, or a combination thereof, and such software can run on a processor such as processor 104 and be stored in a memory as described above.

Transmitter 112 transmits voice and data information via antenna 120 to a recipient communication device such as, for example, base station 122. Receiver 114 receives voice and data information from another communication device (e.g., base station 122). The received voice and data information is provided to the user or used to facilitate device operation.

User interface features include speaker 106, display 108, keypad 110, and microphone 116. Microphone 116 accepts voice or other audio information from the user and converts this information into electrical signals that can be transmitted by transmitter

112. Likewise, speaker 106 converts electrical signals received by receiver 114 into audio information that can be heard by a user of device 100. Display 108 displays information such as call information, keypad entry information, PDA information, signal presence and strength information, battery life information, or any other information useful to the user. Display 108 preferably takes the form of a liquid crystal display (LCD), which have low power consumption characteristics, but could also be implemented as a light emitting diode (LED) display or any other appropriate visual indicator. Keypad 110 typically includes an alphanumeric keypad and may also include special function keys. In one embodiment, keypad 110 is backlit to permit viewing of the keys in low light or dark conditions. Device 100 may also include a flip panel (not shown) that can be closed to conceal some or all of the keypad.

A power source (not shown) provides power to device 100. It can be implemented with rechargeable batteries, such as NiCad or NiMH rechargeable batteries, or with any other suitable power source. Communication device 100 and its associated system described above may be implemented with hardware, software or a combination thereof and may be implemented using a computing system having one or more processors. In one embodiment, it is implemented as a processor-based system. An example processor-based system 502 is shown in Figure 4. All or some of the elements of system 502 may be employed in handset 100 as well as in remote devices (i.e. a server) in communication with handset 100 to provide the functionality described herein. System 502 includes one or more processors, such as processor 504. Processor 504 is connected to communication bus 506.

System 502 also includes main memory 508 and secondary memory 510. Main memory 508 is preferably random access memory (RAM), and secondary memory 510 preferably includes hard disk drive 512 and/or a removable storage drive 514. Removable storage drive 514 is typically a floppy disk drive, a magnetic tape drive, an optical disk drive or the like. Storage drive 514 reads from and writes to removable storage media 518 in a well-known manner. Storage media 518 is typically a floppy disk, magnetic tape, optical disk or the like having stored therein computer software and/or data. Secondary memory 510 may include additional or alternative means for allowing computer programs or other instructions to be loaded into computer system 502. A removable storage unit 522 and interface 520, for example, may be provided. Interface 520 and storage unit 522 could take the form of a program cartridge and cartridge interface (such as that found in video game devices), or a removable memory chip (such as an EPROM, or PROM) and associated socket.

Communications interface 524 allows software and data to be transferred between computer system 502 and external devices. Examples of communications interface 524 include a modem, a network interface (such as, for example, an Ethernet card), a communications port, or a PCMCIA slot and card. Software and data is transferred via communications interface 524 as electronic, electromagnetic, optical or other signals capable of being received by communications interface 524. These signals are provided to communications interface via channel 528. Channel 528 carries signals and can be implemented as a wireless medium, wire or cable, fiber optics, or other communications medium. Examples include a phone line, a cellular phone link, an RF link or a network interface. In this document, the terms "computer program medium" and "computer usable medium" refer generally to media such as removable storage device 518, a disk capable of installation in disk drive 512, and signals on channel 528. These computer program products are means for providing software or program instructions to computer system 502. Computer programs (also called computer control logic) are stored in main memory and/or secondary memory 510. Computer programs can also be received via communications interface 524. Such computer programs, when executed, enable the computer system 502 to perform the features of the present invention as discussed herein.

In particular, the computer programs, when executed, enable the processor 504 to perform the features of the present invention. Accordingly, such computer programs represent controllers of the computer system 502.

In an embodiment where the elements of the invention are implemented using software, the software may be stored in, or transmitted via, a computer program product and loaded into computer system 502 using removable storage drive 514, hard drive 512 or communications interface 524. The control logic (software), when executed by the processor 504, causes processor 504 to perform the functions of the invention as described herein.

In another embodiment, the elements are implemented primarily in hardware using components such as PALs, application specific integrated circuits (ASICs) or other hardware components. Implementation of a hardware state machine to perform the functions described herein will be apparent to persons skilled in the relevant art(s). In yet another embodiment, elements are implemented using a combination of both hardware and software. 2. PDA and System Acquisition Mode and Method

Handset 100, and other communication devices in the network, may be configured to operate as a PDA ("Personal Digital Assistant") as well as a communication device.

The configuration and design of PDAs is well known to those of ordinary skill in the art, and typically provides functionality such as a personal organizer, address and contacts books or lists, and the like. During flight, incoming and outgoing calls are not permitted due to potential interference with the aircraft's communication system. For this reason, the RF module is typically kept in a power off mode. The present invention provides a method and mode allowing PDA operation while in flight without creating the potential for receiving and sending calls. The PDA mode is designed to minimize power consumption, with the CPU remaining in a low power "sleep" mode until the user initiates use of the PDA functions.

Additionally, when flying from one location to another and using a CDMA handset or mobile station, it is necessary to search for and acquire the system frequency at the destination. This is a time consuming operation, and might occupy as many as ten minutes upon arrival at the destination. The present invention also provides a system acquisition mode that periodically searches for and acquires the system frequency. This is performed periodically during flight and in a way that minimizes power consumption. Only the handset receiver module is utilized, thereby avoiding any interference with aircraft communications.

A PDA mode and method 200 is illustrated in Figure 2, and a system acquisition mode and method 250 is illustrated in Figure 3. As described above, these method steps may be implemented as computer program code logic within a computer program product that is executable on the handset processor. Appropriate program code logic for implementing the method steps described below will be apparent to those of ordinary skill in the art.

At step 202, the handset processor or CPU (i.e., processor 104 of Figure 1) is initially in a "sleep" mode. In sleep mode, the CPU is operating at a minimal power level, and both the transmitter 112 and receiver 114 modules are in a power off state. A timer Tl is set to a desired timing interval in step 204. Tl represents the amount of time between each system acquisition search. Tl can be any appropriate timing interval, i.e., three, ten, twenty minutes, etc.

At decision node 206, the CPU monitors for any keypad input. Keypad input would typically be present if the user wants to use the handset PDA functions. If there is no keypad input, the method proceeds to step 208 to determine if the timer Tl has expired. If it has not expired, the processor continues to monitor for keypad input or the expiration of timer Tl. If timer Tl has expired without keypad input, the method proceeds to step 210 and enters system acquisition mode. This will be explained in detail with reference to Figure 3.

If keypad input is received before the expiration of Tl, the method proceeds to step 212 and the CPU enters "normal mode". In normal mode, the CPU is in a normal power state to permit use of the handset's PDA functionality. The transmitter and receiver modules remain in a power off state in this mode. At step 212, a second timer T2 is set to a pre-determined time interval. Timer T2 is provided as a power conservation feature. At decision node 216, the processor verifies that the key input that initiated the normal mode was not the "send" key, as outgoing calls are not allowed. If it was not the send key, the processor turns the PDA mode on (step 218), permitting the user to utilize the PDA functions. If there is no keypad input during the timing interval T2, the PDA mode is turned off and the processor returns to sleep mode (step 202) to prevent power waste. If there is keypad input during interval T2, timer T2 is reset and the processor again verifies that the keypad input was not the send key. PDA mode continues in this manner until the user is finished using the handset (i.e., the user stops making keypad entries) and timer T2 expires without detection of a key press. Alternatively, the user may return the handset to sleep mode himself by powering off the handset manually.

If at decision node 216 the processor determines that the key press was the send key, the method proceeds to decision node 222. Here, the processor determines whether the proposed call is an emergency call. Only if the call is an emergency call will it be allowed. The processor might, for example, determine whether the key sequence following the send key was '911' in order to assess whether the call is an emergency call. If the call is not an emergency call, the key input is ignored (step 224) and the processor returns to sleep mode (step 202). If the call is an emergency call, the current CDMA system frequency is acquired and the call is permitted (step 226). At step 228, the PDA mode is turned off. Only in this scenario will the transmitter and receiver modules be powered on. The system is acquired as set forth in Figure 3, as will be described below. In most situations, however, since the handset is constantly searching for and acquiring the current system (upon each timing interval Tl), the current system will have already been acquired and the emergency call can be transmitted immediately. Alternatively, if even emergency calls are not permitted, upon detection of the send key, the method could proceed directly to step 224, ignoring all send key inputs and returning the processor to sleep mode.

As noted above, upon the expiration of timer Tl without key input (decision node 208), the method proceeds to step 250 of Figure 3 (system acquisition mode). At step 252, the CPU is returned to normal mode and the receiver module (but not the transmitter module) is turned on to permit receipt of the current system frequency. A service bit or register 'SRN' is set to 'ON' to indicate that the system frequency has been acquired. If the system frequency has not been acquired, SRV is set to 'OFF'. At step 254, the processor checks the status of the SRV bit. The processor maintains a frequency pointer that is set to the current system frequency. If the SRV bit is ON, indicating that the frequency pointer was last at the correct system frequency, the method proceeds directly to step 258 to determine whether that frequency is still the correct frequency.

If the SRV bit is OFF, at step 256, the frequency pointer is increased by one to permit the next frequency to be checked. Though the number of nationwide CDMA system frequencies varies depending on the wireless service provider, in one implementation, there are approximately twenty-five possible system frequencies. Hence, the frequency pointer will be cycled through a maximum of 25 frequencies in order to land on the correct system frequency. One new frequency will be checked during each timing interval Tl. This will occur without the necessity for user action or even user knowledge that it is occurring. When the user lands and desires to make a call, the handset will already be set to the correct system frequency.

At step 258, after the frequency pointer has either been increased by one or kept the same, the processor searches to determine whether a system has been acquired at the current frequency pointer (step 258). If a system has been acquired (decision node 260), SRV is set to 'ON' to indicate that the system has been acquired (step 264). If the system has not been acquired, SRV is set to OFF at step 262. In either event, the method thereafter returns to step 202 (Figure 2) and the processor is returned to sleep mode. If another timing interval Tl passes without a key press, the method will return to the routine of Figure 3 to determine whether the system still is or has been acquired, increasing the frequency pointer if necessary.

While various embodiments of the present invention have been described above, it should be understood that they have been presented by way of example only, and not limitation. Thus, the breadth and scope of the present invention should not be limited by any of the above-described exemplary embodiments, but should be defined only in accordance with the following claims and their equivalents.

Claims

Claims
1. A wireless communication handset having PDA functionality and comprising: a processor; a display coupled to said processor; a keypad coupled to said processor; a transmitter module coupled to said processor; a receiver module coupled to said processor; and a computer program product executable on said processor for enabling the processor to enter a PDA mode and a system acquisition mode, the computer program product comprising: computer program code logic for: setting a first timer Tl; monitoring the keypad for input; powering the processor and receiver module to enter the system acquisition mode and search for a system frequency upon expiration of the timer Tl; powering the processor to enter the PDA mode and permit use of the PDA functionality if keypad input is detected; and maintaining the processor in a low-power sleep mode if it is not in system acquisition mode or PDA mode.
2. A handset as claimed in claim 1, wherein in the system acquisition mode, the computer program code logic increases a frequency pointer if the system frequency was not acquired on the previous search, and keeps the frequency pointer the same if the system frequency was acquired on the previous search.
3. A handset as claimed in claim 2, wherein the computer program code logic comprises a register that is set to 'ON' if the system is acquired and that is set to 'OFF' if the system is not acquired.
4. A handset as claimed in claim 1, wherein the computer program code logic further comprises a second timer T2 that is set upon entry into the PDA mode, and wherein the processor is returned to the sleep mode if keypad input is not received before expiration of the timer T2.
5. A handset as claimed in claim 1, wherein the computer program code logic further comprises determining whether any received keypad input is the call 'send' key, and if the input is the call 'send' key, ignoring the keypad input and returning the processor to sleep mode unless the call is an emergency call.
6. A handset as claimed in claim 5, wherein the computer program code logic enters the system acquisition mode and powers on the transmitter to permit an emergency call to be made.
7. A handset as claimed in claim 1 , wherein the handset is a CDMA mobile station.
8. In a wireless communication handset, a method for providing a PDA mode and a system acquisition mode comprising: setting a first timer T 1 ; monitoring the keypad for input; entering the system acquisition mode and searching for a system frequency upon expiration of the timer Tl; entering the PDA mode and permitting use of PDA functionality provided by the handset if keypad input is detected; and maintaining the handset in a low-power sleep mode if it is not in system acquisition mode or PDA mode.
9. A method as claimed in claim 8, wherein in the system acquisition mode, a frequency pointer is increased if the system frequency was not acquired on a previous search, and is kept the same if the system frequency was acquired on the previous search.
10. A method as claimed in claim 8, wherein in the PDA mode, a second timer T2 is set and the handset is returned to the sleep mode if keypad input is not received before expiration of the timer T2.
11. A method as claimed in claim 10, wherein in the PDA mode, if the received keypad input is the call 'send' key, the keypad input is ignored and the handset is returned to the sleep mode unless the call is an emergency call.
PCT/US2000/024628 1999-09-20 2000-09-07 Pda and system acquisition mode and method for wireless communication device WO2001022749A1 (en)

Priority Applications (2)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
US39937799A true 1999-09-20 1999-09-20
US09/399,377 1999-09-20

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