Tuesday, June 13, 2006, 12:00 pm PT (03:00 pm ET)
Wireless iPod video conferencing patent surfacesA relatively new patent filing has surfaced in the United States portraying an "iPod-type" device with real time wireless video-conferencing capabilities.
The filing, which bears a striking resemblance to iPod patent filings previously submitted by Apple Computer, is registered to Kendyl Roman of mediaFrame, Inc., a company that specializes in intellectual property litigation support.
Still, it's unclear if the filing belongs to Apple, as it references several other brand names in addition to the iPod maker's, including Orange Micro and Connectix.
In the filing, made Oct. 27, 2005 and published on June 1st, the inventors describe a wireless handheld device which can "compress, enhance, encode, transmit, decompress and display digital video images in real time."
Real time data transmission is said to be achieved by high levels of effective compression by sub-sampling each frame of a video signal, filtering the pixel values, and then encoding the media.
In one example, the inventors describe an "iPod-type device" with a color display, wireless network support and a decompressor for decompressing live video. Another describes a similar device that also includes a video camera "having the capability to capture full-motion videp" and a microphone.
The patent filing also makes reference to an optional wireless module as well as an "A/V module" comprised of a right integrated speaker, an integrated microphone, a left integrated speaker and a integrated camera with lens.
"The A/V module could be manufactured and marketed separately as an add-on module for standard iPods, or could be incorporated into the iPod packaging as an enhanced iPod-type device," it states. "The wireless module also could be manufactured and marketed separately as an add-on module for standard iPods, or could be incorporated into the iPod packaging as an enhanced iPod-type device."
Other points of the invention include a video zoom function and the ability of any wireless iPod-type device to act as a video server that can transmit pre-recorded video to one or more other iPod-type devices.
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