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Microsoft Patents TV Video Conferences via a PC

By - Source: USPTO | B 14 comments

Microsoft has been granted a video conferencing patent that leverages a home network as the data infrastructure and the TV as the display screen.

Microsoft says it can reduce latencies compared to previous video conferencing approaches, but the patent does not indicate that the company has solved the general problem of home videoconferencing itself.

The patent suggests that a PC client, connected to a TV via a TV client module, can serve as the Internet and data connection, while the TV and a cheap USB camera connected to the TV are used as the visual data output devices. the data between the TV and computer would be accelerated via a remote desktop protocol (RDP), while the incoming and outgoing data traffic is IP-based. In this patent, the PC serves as the data hub, while the TV avoids a scenario in which a user will have to leave the living room to make a visual call.

Of course, video conferences are valuable in business environments and are beneficial to those who need to bridge substantial distance to keep in touch with loved ones. However, in the majority of cases, visual calls are more hassle and are more inconvenient than simple phone calls or even chat messages. Consumer teleconferencing services such as Mingleverse, for example, have failed because we tend to feel rather awkward in front of a camera and there are plenty of cases when we just don't want someone to see us - or our living room.

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  • 17 Hide
    fb39ca4 , August 1, 2012 12:26 AM
    So basically they are trying to patent using Skype with a webcam while your computer is plugged into a TV?
  • 13 Hide
    JohnnyLucky , August 1, 2012 12:17 AM
    I don't want to do a TV Video Conference with my dysfunctional relatives. It is bad enough trying to deal with them one on one.
  • 13 Hide
    A Bad Day , August 1, 2012 12:21 AM
    Which is worse, MS getting this patent? Or some hours-old patent troll?
Other Comments
  • 6 Hide
    drwho1 , August 1, 2012 12:10 AM
    I could swear that we have been doing this for years now.
    M$ can't possibly be serious about this.

    Unless they mean "conference" as on multiple people connecting at the same time, which could be very useful for big corporations but not nearly as much for home use.
  • 13 Hide
    JohnnyLucky , August 1, 2012 12:17 AM
    I don't want to do a TV Video Conference with my dysfunctional relatives. It is bad enough trying to deal with them one on one.
  • 13 Hide
    A Bad Day , August 1, 2012 12:21 AM
    Which is worse, MS getting this patent? Or some hours-old patent troll?
  • 17 Hide
    fb39ca4 , August 1, 2012 12:26 AM
    So basically they are trying to patent using Skype with a webcam while your computer is plugged into a TV?
  • 4 Hide
    classzero , August 1, 2012 12:30 AM
    A Bad DayWhich is worse, MS getting this patent? Or some hours-old patent troll?

    Whats the difference?
    http://www.tomsitpro.com/articles/microsoft_patent_licensing-linux-amdocs-IFI_Claims_Patent_Service,1-352.html
  • 3 Hide
    kronos_cornelius , August 1, 2012 12:51 AM
    I have prior art in my bedroom. MS come and see !
  • 2 Hide
    mightymaxio , August 1, 2012 2:42 AM
    fb39ca4So basically they are trying to patent using Skype with a webcam while your computer is plugged into a TV?

    You do remember Microsoft bought Skype 2 years ago right?
  • 3 Hide
    wjw2000 , August 1, 2012 5:37 AM
    I sincerly hope that this is not because of any changes to patent law. If first to patent is real instead of patent based on original idea then we are in deap crap because patenting something this obvious that so many have done before is ridiculous!!
  • 2 Hide
    punahou1 , August 1, 2012 6:56 AM
    If you ever have the opportunity to work with the USPTO you will soon discover that they are dysfunctional. I did this back in 1996 with Cuseeme...
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , August 1, 2012 10:21 AM
    "the data between the TV and computer would be accelerated via a remote desktop protocol (RDP), while the incoming and outgoing data traffic is IP-based."
    I think they're patent covers the above specifically. Not conferencing in general. Al though with the title of the article I can see how you might think so.
  • 0 Hide
    jaquith , August 1, 2012 1:45 PM
    I'm patenting the AIR we all breath you all owe me big-time.

    This is a ridiculous patent and as stated it's been done for years...crazy.
  • 1 Hide
    xerroz , August 1, 2012 2:14 PM
    Better MS who makes use of the patents than patents troll who do nothing but troll
  • 0 Hide
    assasin32 , August 2, 2012 2:23 AM
    Hmmm I am going to have to say George Orwell came up with this about 60 years ago something quite similar. So I say there is a lot of prior art. WAR IS PEACE, FREEDOM IS SLAVERY, and IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH
  • 0 Hide
    Djhg2000 , August 2, 2012 2:02 PM
    Who... I don''t... But...

    Ah, f*** it. I'm not even gonna comment on these patent trolls anymore.