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"Transmitter, Receiver, Transmitting Method, Receiving Method, Communication System, Communication Method, Program, and Computer-Readable Storage...

August 7, 2014



"Transmitter, Receiver, Transmitting Method, Receiving Method, Communication System, Communication Method, Program, and Computer-Readable Storage Medium" in Patent Application Approval Process

By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Computer Weekly News -- A patent application by the inventor Arentz, Will Archer (Shinagawa-ku, JP), filed on October 24, 2012, was made available online on July 24, 2014, according to news reporting originating from Washington, D.C., by VerticalNews correspondents.

This patent application is assigned to Rakuten, Inc.

The following quote was obtained by the news editors from the background information supplied by the inventors: "In recent years, a technique for performing payment of electronic money using a card incorporating a noncontact IC chip is spreading. In order to make it more convenient to handle the electronic money, software is installed in a cellular phone including a noncontact IC chip, and the mobile terminal is used to pay in the form of the electronic money. The noncontact IC chip performs a proximity communication using a dedicated frequency band."

In addition to the background information obtained for this patent application, VerticalNews journalists also obtained the inventor's summary information for this patent application: "Technical Problem

"The number of mobile terminals incorporating noncontact IC chips is increasing. However, there are also many mobile terminals without noncontact IC chips such as most of smart phones and low-price cellular phones. This is related to the fact that the noncontact IC chip is dedicated hardware for communication that uses a radio waves. The presence of the mobile terminals without noncontact IC chips is an obstacle in spreading the use of electronic money payment performed using a mobile terminal. A user who owns a mobile terminal which does not include a noncontact IC chip and uses electronic money has to separately carry a noncontact IC card.

"The present invention has been devised in view of these problems and it is an object of the present invention to provide a technique for making it possible to perform, even when a device such as a mobile terminal does not include hardware for proximity communication such as a noncontact IC chip, proximity communication using the device.

"Solution to Problem

"In order to solve the problems, a transmitter according to the present invention includes: means for acquiring transmission data; encoding means for outputting output sound data of a PCM format obtained by encoding the transmission data, the output sound data indicating sound in an inaudible frequency band; and sound output means for causing a DA converter to convert the output sound data so as to cause a speaker to output sound corresponding to the output sound data. The encoding means outputs the output sound data such that the output sound data indicates sound having a plurality of sections with sound and soundless sections between the adjacent sections with sound according to the transmission data and that the output sound data indicates a sine curve in which the amplitude of the sections with sound increases from a start time and decreases after reaching a maximum.

"A receiver according to the present invention includes: sound input means for acquiring, via an AD converter, input sound data of a PCM format indicating sound in an inaudible frequency band input to a microphone and obtained by encoding transmission data, the sound having a plurality of sections with sound and soundless sections between the adjacent sections with sound according to the transmission data and wherein the sound indicates a sine curve in which the amplitude of the sections with sound increases from a start time and decreases after reaching a maximum; extracting means for generating extracted sound data obtained by extracting the sound in the inaudible frequency band from the sound indicated by the input sound data; and decoding means for decoding the transmission data based on the extracted sound data.

"According to the present invention, since the apparatus including the DA converter and the speaker and the apparatus including the AD converter and the microphone are used, it is possible to perform communication even if dedicated hardware for proximity communication such as a noncontact IC chip is not used.

"A mobile terminal according to the present invention includes: means for acquiring data indicating a payment account transmitted to a store terminal; encoding means for outputting output sound data of a PCM format obtained by encoding the data indicating the payment account; and sound output means for causing a DA converter to convert the output sound data so as to cause a speaker to output sound corresponding to the output sound data.

"A store terminal according to the present invention includes: sound input means for acquiring, via an AD converter, input sound data of a PCM format indicating sound input to a microphone, the sound being obtained by encoding data indicating a payment account output by a mobile terminal; decoding means for decoding the data indicating the payment account based on the input sound data; payment inquiring means for transmitting the data indicating the payment account and a payment amount to a balance management apparatus; and result output means for outputting information indicating a result of payment based on information indicating propriety of payment received from the balance management apparatus.

"A transmitting method according to the present invention includes: a step of acquiring data indicating a payment account transmitted to a store terminal; an encoding step of outputting output sound data of a PCM format obtained by encoding the data indicating the payment account; and an output step of causing a DA converter to convert the output sound data so as to cause a speaker to output sound corresponding to the output sound data.

"A receiving method according to the present invention includes: an input step of acquiring, via an AD converter, input sound data of a PCM format indicating sound input to a microphone, the sound being obtained by encoding data indicating a payment account output by a mobile terminal; a decoding step of decoding the data indicating the payment account based on the input sound data; a payment inquiring step of transmitting the data indicating the payment account and a payment amount to a balance management apparatus; and a result output step of outputting information indicating a result of payment based on information indicating propriety of payment received from the balance management apparatus.

"A program for a mobile terminal according to the present invention causes a computer to function as: means for acquiring data indicating a payment account transmitted to a store terminal; encoding means for outputting output sound data of a PCM format obtained by encoding the data indicating the payment account; and sound output means for causing a DA converter to convert the output sound data so as to cause a speaker to output sound corresponding to the output sound data.

"A program for store terminal according to the present invention causes a computer to function as: means for acquiring data indicating a payment account transmitted to a store terminal; encoding means for outputting output sound data of a PCM format obtained by encoding the data indicating the payment account; and sound output means for causing a DA converter to convert the output sound data so as to cause a speaker to output sound corresponding to the output sound data.

"A payment system according to the present invention includes the mobile terminal and the store terminal.

"A payment method according to the present invention includes: a step of acquiring data indicating a payment account transmitted to a store terminal; an encoding step of outputting output sound data of a PCM format obtained by encoding the data indicating the payment account; an output step of a mobile terminal causing a DA converter to convert the output sound data so as to cause a speaker to output sound corresponding to the output sound data; an input step of a store terminal acquiring, via an AD converter, input sound data of a PCM format indicating sound input to a microphone, the sound being obtained by encoding data indicating a payment account transmitted by a mobile terminal; a decoding step of decoding the data indicating the payment account based on the input sound data; a payment inquiring step of transmitting the data indicating the payment account and a payment amount to a balance management apparatus; and a result output step of outputting information indicating a result of payment based on information indicating propriety of payment received from the balance management apparatus.

"According to the present invention, since the mobile terminal including the DA converter and the speaker and the store terminal including the AD converter and the microphone are used, it is possible to perform payment even if dedicated hardware for proximity communication such as a noncontact IC chip is not used.

"In an aspect of the present invention, the encoding means may output the output sound data to suppress an amplitude change of the sound indicated by the output sound data.

"In an aspect of the present invention, the mobile terminal may further include start control means for causing the speaker to output sound indicating a start of communication to the store terminal and for changing the magnitude of the sound that the sound output means causes the speaker to output based on sound input to a microphone, the sound being sound of the store terminal responding to the sound indicating the start of the communication.

"In an aspect of the present invention, the mobile terminal may further include start control means for causing, using the sound output means, the speaker to output sound indicating a start of communication to the store terminal, and for, when sound of the store terminal responding to the sound indicating the start of the communication is not recognized, changing the magnitude of the sound that the sound output means causes the speaker to output and causing the speaker to output the sound indicating the start of the communication to the store terminal, repeatedly.

"In an aspect of the present invention, the mobile terminal may further include payment information acquiring means for acquiring, based on a user ID, information indicating a payment account corresponding to the user ID via a network.

"In an aspect of the present invention, the information indicating the payment account may include encrypted balance information of the payment account.

"In an aspect of the present invention, the mobile terminal may further include payment result acquiring means for acquiring, after the speaker outputs sound corresponding to the information indicating the payment account, payment result information including updated and encrypted balance information of the payment account from the store terminal.

"In an aspect of the present invention, the store terminal may further include start response means for causing, when sound input to the microphone, which is sound indicating a start of communication of the mobile terminal, satisfies a predetermined condition, a speaker to output sound indicating information for changing the magnitude of sound output by the mobile terminal.

"In an aspect of the present invention, the result output means may output, when information indicating payment permission is received from the balance management apparatus, information for causing the speaker to output, as the information indicating the result of the payment, predetermined sound that the user can recognize.

"In an aspect of the present invention, the data indicating the payment account may include encrypted balance information of the payment account, and the result output means may receive, when information indicating payment permission is received from the balance management apparatus, updated and encrypted balance information of the payment account from the balance management apparatus and transmit the received balance information to the mobile terminal.

"In an aspect of the present invention, the store terminal may further include completion information transmitting means for transmitting information indicating payment completion to the balance management apparatus when information indicating that the balance information is received from the mobile terminal after the updated and encrypted balance information of the payment account is transmitted to the mobile terminal.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

"FIG. 1 is a diagram showing an example of the configuration of a payment system according to a first embodiment.

"FIG. 2 is a diagram showing an example of the hardware configuration of a payer terminal and a store terminal according to the first embodiment.

"FIG. 3 is a functional block diagram showing functions realized by the payer terminal according to the first embodiment.

"FIG. 4 is a functional block diagram showing functions realized by the store terminal according to the first embodiment.

"FIG. 5 is a functional block diagram showing functions realized by a payment server according to the first embodiment.

"FIG. 6 is a diagram showing an example of a flow of transmitting process performed using sound.

"FIG. 7 is a diagram showing a transition of sound with time indicated by output sound data.

"FIG. 8 is a diagram showing an example of a waveform in a section with sound.

"FIG. 9 is a diagram showing an example of a flow of receiving process performed using sound.

"FIG. 10 is a diagram showing an example of a processing flow of the payer terminal.

"FIG. 11 is a diagram showing an example of a processing flow of the store terminal.

"FIG. 12 is a diagram showing an example of a processing flow of the payment server.

"FIG. 13 is a diagram showing an example of information managed by the payment server.

"FIG. 14 is a diagram showing an example of the configuration of a payment system according to a second embodiment.

"FIG. 15 is a functional block diagram showing functions realized by a payer terminal according to the second embodiment.

"FIG. 16 is a functional block diagram showing functions realized by a store terminal according to the second embodiment.

"FIG. 17 is a functional block diagram showing functions realized by a black box according to the second embodiment.

"FIG. 18 is a diagram showing an example of a processing flow of the payer terminal.

"FIG. 19 is a diagram showing an example of a processing flow of the store terminal.

"FIG. 20 is a diagram showing an example of a processing flow of the black box.

"FIG. 21 is a diagram showing an example of encrypted balance information."

URL and more information on this patent application, see: Arentz, Will Archer. Transmitter, Receiver, Transmitting Method, Receiving Method, Communication System, Communication Method, Program, and Computer-Readable Storage Medium. Filed October 24, 2012 and posted July 24, 2014. Patent URL: http://appft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO2&Sect2=HITOFF&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsearch-adv.html&r=809&p=17&f=G&l=50&d=PG01&S1=20140717.PD.&OS=PD/20140717&RS=PD/20140717

Keywords for this news article include: Rakuten Inc.

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Source: Computer Weekly News


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