Remotely configured media device

Remotely configured media device
US008396948B2
(12) United States Patent
(10) Patent N0.:
(45) Date of Patent:
Marriott et al.
(54)
REMOTELY CONFIGURED MEDIA DEVICE
(75) Inventors: Greg Marriott, Honolulu, HI (US);
Andrew Bert Hodge, Palo Alto, CA
(Us)
(73) Assignee: Apple Inc., Cupertino, CA (US)
(*)
Notice:
Subject to any disclaimer, the term of this
patent is extended or adjusted under 35
USC 154(b) by 0 days.
US 8,396,948 B2
*Mar. 12, 2013
4,928,307 A
5/1990 Lynn
5,185,906 A
5,293,494 A
2/1993 Brooks
3/1994 Saito et :11.
5,379,057 A
1/1995 Clough
5,406,305 A
5,559,945 A
4/1995 Shimomura et a1.
9/1996 Beaudet et :11.
5,566,337 A
10/1996 Szymanski et 31.
5,583,993
5,608,698
5,616,876
5,617,386
5,670,985
12/1996
3/1997
4/1997
4/1997
9/1997
A
A
A
A
A
5,675,362 A
Foster et a1.
Yamanoi et :11.
Cluts
Choi
Cappels, Sr. et a1.
10/1997 Clough
(Continued)
This patent is subject to a terminal dis
claimer.
FOREIGN PATENT DOCUMENTS
(21) Appl. N0.: 13/296,089
(22)
Filed:
DE
DE
Nov. 14, 2011
(65)
OTHER PUBLICATIONS
May 17, 2012
“Apple Announces iTunes 2,” Press Release, Apple Computer, Inc.,
Oct. 23, 2001.
Related US. Application Data
(63)
(60)
(51)
Continuation of application No. 13/047,082, ?led on
Mar. 14, 2011, noW Pat. No. 8,078,685, Which is a
continuation of application No. 11/583,327, ?led on
Oct. 18, 2006, noW Pat. No. 7,930,369.
Provisional application No. 60/728,671, ?led on Oct.
19, 2005.
Int. Cl.
G06F 15/177
(52)
(58)
(2006.01)
US. Cl. ....... .. 709/220; 709/203; 709/208; 709/223
Field of Classi?cation Search ................ .. 709/203,
709/208, 217, 220, 206, 223, 227, 232; 700/94
See application ?le for complete search history.
(56)
5/1978
5/1983
5/1984
5/1986
Primary Examiner * Ramy M Osman
(74) Attorney, Agent, or Firm * Novak Druce Connolly
Bove + Quigg LLP
(57)
ABSTRACT
Improved techniques for controlling operation of a portable
electronic device are disclosed. Portable electronic devices
Which interact With a host electronic device can have their
operational settings (e.g., con?gurations or preferences)
remotely controlled. As a result, a host electronic device can
offer a more sophisticated user interface and portable elec
tronic devices need less local user interface features because
remotely-controlled (i.e., host controlled) operational set
tings are transferred to the portable electronic devices,
Whereby the portable electronic devices can thereafter oper
ate in accordance With such settings.
U.S. PATENT DOCUMENTS
A
A
A
A
(Continued)
these operational settings can be remotely controlled. The
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9 Claims, 7 Drawing Sheets
502
RECEIVE
OPERATIONAL
SETTINGS
NO
DATA
OPERATE CLIENT DEVICE
IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE
STORED OPERATIONAL
SETTINGS DATA
US 8,396,948 B2
Page2
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* cited by examiner
US. Patent
Mar. 12, 2013
Sheet 2 0f 7
US 8,396,948 B2
200
/
202
CONNECTED
NO
204 /\
OBTAIN CLIENT DEVICE INFORMATION
FROM THE CLIENT DEVICE
206 ’\
DETERMINE SUPPORTED SETTINGS
AT CLIENT DEVICE
208 &
ENABLE DISPLAY SCREENS AT HOST
DEVICE THAT CORRESPOND TO
THE SUPPORTED SETTINGS
210x’
DISCONNECTED
212x
NO
DISABLE THE PREVIOUSLY ENABLED
DISPLAY SCREENS
FIG. 2
US. Patent
Mar. 12, 2013
Sheet 3 of7
US 8,396,948 B2
302 ~v
SELECTION
OF
ENABLED
DISPLAY
SCREEN
?
NO
DISPLAY THE ENABLED DISPLAY
304 C“
SCREEN THAT HAS BEEN SELECTED
NO
SETTING
CHANGED
?
STORE UPDATED SETTINGS DATA
308 '\
AT THE HOST DEvICE
PROVIDE THE UPDATED SETTINGS
DATA TO THE CLIENT DEvICE
I
I 310
312~
NO
31,2
YES
(
REMOVE DISPLAY OF THE ENABLED DISPLAY SCREEN
FIG. 3
US. Patent
Mar. 12, 2013
Sheet 4 017
4(>)4
4(56
432
EQ
I
REPEAT
US 8,396,948 B2
408
AUDIO I
SHUFFLE
BOOKS
E UALIZATION SETTINGS
412 ®() OFF
400
\ 410
414% ALWAYS USE
/
BASE BOOST
416
418 N. USE HOST SETTINGS
FIG. 4A
EQ
452
454
456
I
I
I
REPEAT
SHUFFLE
458
(I
AUDIO
BOOKS
SHUFFLE SETTINGS
462 @Q OFF
\ 460
464% SoNGS
466NO ALBUMS
FIG. 4B
450
US. Patent
Mar. 12, 2013
Sheet 5 of7
US 8,396,948 B2
500
/
502
RECEIVE
OPERATIONAL
SETTINGS
DATA
?
NO
STORE OPERATIONAL SETTINGS
DATA
OPERATE CLIENT DEVICE
IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE
STORED OPERATIONAL
SETTINGS DATA
END
FIG. 5
N
504
"w 506
US. Patent
Mar. 12, 2013
Sheet 6 of7
US 8,396,948 B2
600
so;
’/
HOST COMPUTER
614’A“
618
COMM.
l" MODULE -—~~_/’
_
,/’*\
MANAGEMENT
\\
6Q4
\_’-—\\
(//'
‘I
MODULE
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MODULE
PLAY
MODULE
PLAY
MODULE
Q
612 T
+ @624
MEDIA
DATABASE
MED|A
DATABASE
5610
MEDIA
m 603
STORE
MEDIA PLAYER
FIG. 6
‘'
US. Patent
Mar. 12, 2013
Sheet70f7
US 8,396,948 B2
/
700
USERINPUT
DEV|CE
SPEAKER
m
m
DISPLAY
CODEC
/\\/712
T
m
T
PROCESSOR
738
NETWORK/ BUS
711
2
INTERFACE
l
g
i
M
CACHE
716
m
FILE
SYSTEM
(STORAGE DISK)
RAM
)
ROM
»
(
K
722
720
FIG. 7
<
‘
'
US 8,396,948 B2
1
2
REMOTELY CONFIGURED MEDIA DEVICE
being from the user While interacting With the user interface
on the host electronic device; and transferring the at least one
CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED
APPLICATIONS
operational setting from the host electronic device to the
client electronic device, Whereby the client electronic device
stores the at least one operational setting and thereafter oper
ates in accordance With the stored at least one operational
This application is a continuation of co-pending US.
patent application Ser. No. 13/047,082, ?led on Mar. 14,
2011, and entitled “REMOTELY CONFIGURED MEDIA
setting.
As a method for operating a portable media player in accor
dance With operational settings, one embodiment of the
invention includes at least the acts of: receiving operational
DEVICE,” Which claims priority bene?t to US. patent appli
cation Ser. No. 11/583,327, ?led on Oct. 18, 2006, Which
issued on Apr. 19, 2011 as US. Pat. No. 7,930,369, and is
entitled “REMOTELY CONFIGURED MEDIA DEVICE,”
settings data from a host computer over a data link betWeen
the portable media player and the host computer; storing the
operational settings data at the portable media player; and
Which claims priority bene?t ofU.S. Provisional Application
No. 60/728,671, ?led Oct. 19, 2005, and entitled
operating a media management application on the portable
media player in accordance With the stored operational set
“REMOTELY CONFIGURED MEDIA DEVICE,” all of
tings data.
Which are hereby incorporated herein by reference in their
As a computer readable medium including at least com
entirety.
puter program code for remotely providing operational set
tings from a host device to a client device, one embodiment of
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
20
1. Field of the Invention
The present invention relates to media devices and, more
particularly, to con?guration of media devices.
2. Description of the Related Art
Today, portable media devices, such as Personal Digital
Assistants (PDAs) or hand-held media players, are battery
user interface permitting a user of the host device to select
operational settings for use With the client device; computer
program code for receiving a user selection of at least one
25
as displays and sWitches/buttons. Conventionally, portable
30
one operational setting and thereafter operates in accordance
With the stored at least one operational setting.
As a computer readable medium including at least com
puter program code for operating a portable media player in
accordance With operational settings, one embodiment of the
portable. At the same time, the functionality supported by
portable media devices is increasing. Consequently, as por
table media devices get smaller While supporting robust func
tionality, there are increasing dif?culties in providing
adequate user interfaces for the portable media devices.
operational setting for the client device, the user selection
being from the user While interacting With the user interface
on the host device; and computer program code for transfer
ring the at least one operational setting from the ho st device to
the client device, Whereby the client device stores the at least
poWered and include various user interface components, such
media devices use buttons, dials or touchpads together With
graphical user interfaces to control the devices, including
setting of user preferences for use by the devices. These
portable media devices continue to get smaller and more
the invention includes at least: computer program code for
presenting a user interface on a display of the host device, the
35
invention includes at least: computer program code for
receiving operational settings data from a host computer over
a data link betWeen the portable media player and the host
computer; computer program code for storing the operational
settings data at the portable media player; and computer pro
Accordingly, there is a need for improved user interface
capabilities for portable media players.
40
gram code for operating a media management application on
the portable media player in accordance With the stored
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
operational settings data.
The invention relates to improved techniques for control
ling operation of a portable electronic device. According to
the invention, portable electronic devices Which interact With
As a portable media player for storing and presenting
a host electronic device can have their operational settings
media assets, one embodiment of the invention includes at
least: an input/ output interface that provides a data connec
tion With a remote computing device; at least one data storage
(e. g., con?gurations or preferences) remotely controlled. As a
device that stores the media assets and operational settings
45
result, a host electronic device can offer a more sophisticated
data, the media assets and the operational settings data being
user interface and portable electronic devices need less local
user interface features because these operational settings can
provided over the data connection from the remote computing
device; and a media management application that presents
50
be remotely controlled. The remotely-controlled (i.e., host
controlled) operational settings are transferred to the portable
electronic devices, Whereby the portable electronic devices
one or more of the media assets in accordance With the opera
tional settings data.
As a media system, one embodiment of the invention
can thereafter operate in accordance With such settings.
The invention can be implemented in numerous Ways,
including as a method, system, device, apparatus, or com
55
puter readable medium. Several embodiments of the inven
tion are discussed beloW.
As a method for remotely providing operational settings
from a host electronic device to a client electronic device, the
includes a host computer for storing and presenting host
media assets, and a client media player for storing and pre
senting client media assets. The host computer includes at
least: a host input/ output interface that provides connection
With the client media player; a ho st media management appli
cation that (i) enables a user of the host computer to set user
60
preferences to be used on the client media player, and (ii)
host electronic device having a display, one embodiment of
transfers one or more of the host media assets from the host
the invention includes at least the acts of: presenting a user
computer to become the client media assets at the client media
player; and at least one host data storage device that stores the
host media assets and the user preferences for the client media
player, the user preferences being set by a user of the host
interface on the display of the host electronic device, the user
interface permitting a user of the host electronic device to
select operational settings for use With the client electronic
device; receiving a user selection of at least one operational
setting for the client electronic device, the user selection
65
computer using the media management application. The cli
ent media player includes at least: a client input/output inter
US 8,396,948 B2
3
4
face that provides connection With the host computer; at least
tion provided by Apple Inc. The host computer 102, among
one client data storage device that stores the client media
assets and the user preferences, the user preferences being
provided over the connection from the host computer; and a
client media management application that presents one or
more of the client media assets at the client media player in
accordance With the user preferences.
Other aspects and embodiments of the invention Will
other things, also includes a host data storage 110 and settings
data 112. The host data storage 110 stores the data for the host
computer 102. The data stored in the host data storage 110 is
typically utiliZed by the host application 108. For example,
When the host application 108 is or includes a media manage
ment application, the host data can pertain to media data, such
as media data pertaining to media items. The settings data 112
become apparent from the folloWing detailed description
taken in conjunction With the accompanying draWings Which
illustrate, by Way of example, the principles of the invention.
can be managed by the host application 108. The settings data
112 pertains to data that controls or sets one or more opera
tional settings on the client device 104. The operational set
tings, for example, can include user preferences or con?gu
rations. Operational settings can also be referred to as
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
options. The settings data 112 is determined by the host
The invention Will be readily understood by the folloWing
detailed description in conjunction With the accompanying
draWings, Wherein like reference numerals designate like
application 108 in accordance With user interaction With the
user interface provided by the host application 108.
The client device 104 is typically a highly portable elec
structural elements, and in Which:
FIG. 1 is a block diagram of a settings management system
according to one embodiment of the invention.
FIG. 2 is a How diagram of a settings management process
according to one embodiment of the invention.
FIG. 3 is a How diagram of a settings modi?cation process
according to one embodiment of the invention.
FIG. 4A is an exemplary diagram of a settings modi?cation
screen according to one embodiment of the invention.
tronic device. As an example, the client device 104 can be a
20
device 104 can be a hand-held media player. The client device
104 includes a client application 114. The client application
114 operates on the client device 104. The client application
114 can, for example, pertain to a media management appli
25
cation that enables the client device 104 to operate as a media
30
player. The client application 114 makes use of client data
storage 116 and settings data 118. The client data storage 116
stores data utiliZed by the client application 1 14. For example,
When the client application 1 14 is a media management appli
cation, the client data being stored in the client data storage
116 can pertain to media data. The client application 114 also
makes use of the settings data 118. In one embodiment, the
settings data 118 are utiliZed by the client application 114 to
control operational settings that are utiliZed by the client
FIG. 4B is an exemplary diagram of another settings modi
?cation screen according to one embodiment of the invention.
FIG. 5 is a How diagram of a settings utiliZation process
according to one embodiment of the invention.
FIG. 6 is a block diagram of a media management system
hand-held computing device. More particularly, the client
according to one embodiment of the invention.
FIG. 7 is a block diagram of a media player according to
one embodiment of the invention.
35
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
application 114.
The speci?c nature of the operational settings being set and
utiliZed varies Widely With different client devices. In an
The invention relates to improved techniques for control
ling operation of a portable electronic device. According to
the invention, portable electronic devices Which interact With
exemplary embodiment, such as Where the host application
40
108 and the client application 114 are media management
applications operating on a music player, the settings data can
a host electronic device can have their operational settings
pertains to settings such as: shuf?e settings, repeat settings,
(e. g., con?gurations or preferences) remotely controlled. As a
playback speed settings, equalization settings, sound check
settings, clicker settings, language settings, menu con?gura
result, a host electronic device can offer a more sophisticated
user interface and portable electronic devices need less local
user interface features because these operational settings can
tion settings, etc.
45
be remotely controlled. The remotely-controlled (i.e., host
controlled) operational settings are transferred to the portable
electronic devices, Whereby the portable electronic devices
set certain operational settings that Will be applied to affect
the operation of the client application 114 on the client device
can thereafter operate in accordance With such settings.
Embodiments of the invention are discussed beloW With
reference to FIGS. 1-7. HoWever, those skilled in the art Will
Accordingly, a user of the host computer 102 is able to
interact With the host application 108 using a user interface to
104. In the event that the client device 104 has limited user
50
interface capabilities, the ability to control operational set
tings (from the client device 104) to be utiliZed by the client
readily appreciate that the detailed description given herein
device 104 can be severely hindered. Hence, enabling a user
With respect to these ?gures is for explanatory purposes as the
invention extends beyond these limited embodiments.
FIG. 1 is a block diagram of a settings management system
to remotely control operational settings for the client device
104 via a user interface made available at the host computer
55
100 according to one embodiment of the invention. The set
tings management system 100 includes a host computer 102
and a client device 104. The host computer 102 is able to
communicate With the client device 104 over a data link 106.
The data link 106 can be provided over a Wired netWork, a
Wireless netWork, or both.
The host computer 102 includes a host application 108.
The host application 108 can represent an application pro
gram that is operable on the host computer 102. As an
example, the host application 108 can be a media manage
ment application. One particular example of a media man
agement application is iTunes® media management applica
60
102 is advantageous for a variety of reasons. One advantage
of this approach is that the host computer 102 can offer an
improved user interface that is often larger and more sophis
ticated than Would otherWise be available on the client device
104. Another advantage of this approach is that the need for
user interface features at the client device 104 is reduced,
thereby alloWing the client device 104 to be smaller, lighter
and potentially less expensive.
The host computer 102 and the client device 104 can also
be referred to as a host electronic device and a client elec
65
tronic device, respectively. The client device 104 is normally
a portable media device. In one embodiment, the form factor
of the portable media device is hand-held or smaller. The
US 8,396,948 B2
5
6
portable media device may, for example, be small and light
operational settings are no longer accessible at the host
weight enough to be carried in one hand, Worn, or placed in a
device. FolloWing the block 212, the settings management
process 200 ends. HoWever, in general, the settings manage
pocket.
To make client devices user-friendly, one approach is to
ment process 200 can be invoked Whenever a client device is
limit the number of user controls. In one embodiment, a client
device does not include a display screen. In such cases, the
connected to the host device.
ability for a user of the client device to control settings (e.g.,
user preferences or other con?gurations) by Way of making
selections With respect to a display screen is not possible.
only a single client device, it should be understood that the
settings management system 100 can support a plurality of
different client devices. In doing so, the host device 102 is
able to individually manage the settings to be utiliZed by each
Although the settings management system 100 depicts
With such client devices, the ability to enable users to set user
preferences or con?gurations can be substantially limited.
Consequently, the invention advantageously enables user
of the different client devices. In one embodiment, for each of
the client devices, a separate settings management process
preferences for a client device to be set at a host computer and
then transferred to the client device.
FIG. 2 is a How diagram of a settings management process
200 according to one embodiment of the invention. The set
200 can be invoked and utiliZed.
FIG. 3 is a How diagram of a settings modi?cation process
300 according to one embodiment of the invention. The set
tings management process 200 is, for example, performed by
tings modi?cation process 300 is, for example, performed by
a host device, such as the host computer 102 illustrated in
FIG. 1. More speci?cally, as an example, the host application
108 of the host computer 102 can perform the settings man
a host device, such as the host computer 102 illustrated in
FIG. 1.
20
sion 202. The decision 202 determines Whether a client device
is connected to the host device. When the decision 202 deter
mines that a client device is not connected to the host device,
then the settings management process 200 aWaits such a
25
modify operational settings of a client device. In order for
30
such a display screen to be presented, the display screen must
be currently enabled as discussed above With regard to FIG. 2.
For example, the client device must be connected to the host
device. In any case, When the decision 302 determines that
there has been no selection of an enabled display screen, the
settings modi?cation process 300 aWaits such a selection. In
other Words, the settings modi?cation process 300 is effec
tively invoked When a user has selected an enabled display
35
screen to be presented on the host device.
Once the decision 302 determines that a selection of an
connection. In other Words, the settings management process
200 can be deemed invoked once a client device is connected
to the host device.
Accordingly, When the decision 202 determines that a cli
ent device is connected, the settings management process 200
continues. When the settings management process 200 con
tinues, client device information is obtained 204 from the
client device. Here, through communications betWeen the
host device and the client device, the host computer is able to
obtain 204 the client device information that is provided by
enabled display screen has been made, the enabled display
the client device. The client device information can pertain to
various features available at the client device, Whether soft
Ware features or hardWare features. The client device infor
mation can also include a type indication for the client device.
The client device can also provide an identi?er for the client
The settings modi?cation process 300 begins With a deci
sion 302. The decision 302 determines Whether a selection of
an enabled display screen has been made. In other Words,
Whether a user of the host device has requested to have the
host device display a display screen that can be utiliZed to
agement process 200.
The settings management process 200 begins With a deci
40
screen that has been selected is displayed 304. Next, a deci
sion 306 determines Whether the user has interacted With the
enabled display screen to change one or more settings per
taining to operation of the client device. When the decision
device.
306 determines that one or more settings have been changed,
Next, the settings management process 200 determines 206
supported settings at the client device. The supported settings
updated settings data is stored 308 at the host device. The
updated settings data includes at least the settings data that
has been changed. Typically, the host device Will store all of
the settings data. Hence, When certain settings data has been
changed, the certain settings data is stored so as to replace the
at the client device are those settings that the client device can
recogniZe. Next, display screens at the host device are
enabled 208. The display screens being enabled 208 are those
45
previously stored settings data corresponding thereto. Next,
display screens that correspond to the supported settings. In
other Words, the display screens that are enabled 208 are all
part of a user interface provided at the host device and serves
50
the updated settings data is provided 310 to the client device.
Typically, the updated settings data is provided 310 to the
to enable a user of the host device to revieW or modify one or
client device over a data link, such as data link 106 illustrated
more operational settings that are supported by the client
in FIG. 1. As previously noted, the data link can pertain to a
Wired netWork, a Wireless netWork or both. Here, the updated
settings data provided 310 to the client device pertains to at
device.
Thereafter, a decision 210 determines Whether the client
device has been disconnected from the host device. When the
decision 210 determines that the client device has not been
55
disconnected but remains connected, the settings manage
ment process 200 continues to enable display of the display
screens that correspond to the one or more operational set
tings that are supported by the client device. HoWever, When
the decision 210 determines that the client device has been
disconnected, then the previously enabled display screens are
disabled 212. Here, once the client device has been discon
nected from the host device, the host device typically does not
alloW the settings for the client device to be modi?ed. As a
result, the display screens that Would otherWise be utiliZed by
a user of the host device to revieW and modify the supported
least the settings that have been changed. Alternatively, all of
the settings data can be provided 310 to the client device and
60
thereby replace all of the settings data at the client device. On
the other hand, When the decision 306 determines that the
settings have not been changed, the settings modi?cation
process 300 bypasses the blocks 308 and 310.
After the updated settings data has been provided 3 10 to the
client device (or after blocks 308 and 310 are bypassed), a
decision 312 determines Whether the settings modi?cation
process 300 is done. When the user has completed making
65
any changes to settings data, the settings modi?cation process
300 can be manually or automatically determined to be done.
Regardless, When the decision 312 determines that the set
US 8,396,948 B2
7
8
tings modi?cation process 300 is not done, the settings modi
selected, the client device Would not provide any shuf?e
?cation process 300 returns to repeat the decision 306 and
operation. The second settings option is “Songs” and corre
subsequent operations.
sponds to a selector 464. When selected, the client device
Once the decision 312 determines that the settings modi
?cation process 300 is done, then display of the enabled
display screen is removed 314. Thereafter, the settings modi
?cation process 300 is complete and ends.
FIG. 4A is an exemplary diagram of a settings modi?cation
Would shuf?e a play order of songs on a song basis after
playing through all (or a playlist of) the songs. The third
settings option is “Albums” and corresponds to a selector 466.
When selected, the client device Would shuf?e a play order of
songs on an album basis (e. g., after playing all the songs
Within an album).
FIG. 5 is a How diagram of a settings utilization process
screen 400 according to one embodiment of the invention.
The settings modi?cation screen 400 represents a display
screen that can be utilized to modify operational settings of a
500 according to one embodiment of the invention. The set
client device (e.g., block 304 of FIG. 3). In this embodiment,
tings utilization process 500 is, for example, performed by a
the settings modi?cation screen 400 pertains to a display
screen provided by a media management application. The
settings modi?cation screen 400 includes tab selectors 402,
404, 406 and 408. The tab selector 402 pertains to equaliza
client device, such as the client device 104 illustrated in FIG.
1. More speci?cally, as an example, the client application 114
of the client computer 104 can perform the settings utilization
process 500. In one example, the client application is a media
tion settings, the tab selector 404 pertains to repeat settings,
the tab selector 406 pertains to shuffle settings, and the tab
selector 408 pertains to audio books. As depicted in FIG. 4A,
the settings modi?cation screen 400 pertains to an equaliza
tion settings screen, since the tab selector 402 has been cho
sen. As such, the settings modi?cation screen 400 depicts
equalization settings 410. A user can thus interact With the
management application.
20
settings modi?cation screen 400 to make choices as to hoW a
client device is to operate With regards to equalization. In this
embodiment, the equalization settings 410 available on the
25
The settings utilization process 500 begins With a decision
502. The decision 502 determines Whether operational set
tings data has been received 502. As noted above With respect
to the settings modi?cation process 300 illustrated in FIG. 3,
operational settings data can be set at a host computer and
transferred to a client device. For example, in FIG. 3, updated
settings data can be provided 310 to the client device. In any
case, When the decision 502 determines that operational set
settings modi?cation screen 400 present a user With three
tings data has not been received, then the settings utilization
choices for selection. The three choices can be selected by
process 500 aWaits such data.
selectors 412, 414 and 418. The selector 412 alloWs a user to
select “Off” if no equalization operations are desired at the
client device. The selector 414 alloWs the user to select
30
“Always Use” to utilize a predetermined equalization setting.
A selector 416 alloWs the user to select one of a plurality of
preset equalization settings to be used as the predetermined
equalization setting in the case Where the selector 414 is
selected. In the example illustrated in FIG. 4A, the selected
predetermined equalization setting is knoWn as “Bass Boost”.
35
Once the decision 502 determines that operational settings
data has been received, the operational settings data is stored
504 at the client device. As noted above in FIG. 1, the client
device can include data storage, such as the client data storage
116. Thereafter, the client device can be operated 506 in the
normal course in accordance With the stored operational set
tings data. In other Words, the client device can make use of
operational settings data that has been set at a ho st computer,
yet utilized on the client computer. For example, although the
The selector 418 alloWs the user to select “Use Host Settings”
operational settings data is remotely determined and then
to utilize host equalization settings. For example, With respect
provided to the client device, the client device can make use of
to FIG. 1, the host application 108 can alloW a user of the host
40
the operational settings data as if it had been provided locally.
computer 102 to set equalization settings for media items
available at the host computer 102. The selection of the selec
In one embodiment, all or substantially all of the available
operational settings for the client device can be set at the host
tor 418 indicates that the user desires to utilize the same
computer. In another embodiment, some operational settings
equalization settings automatically on the client device 104.
type of genre, artist, album or media item (e.g., song, video,
can be remotely set at the host computer, While other opera
tional settings can be sent at the client device. In still another
embodiment, some or all of the operational settings can be set
at either the host computer or the client device. FolloWing the
etc.), the equalization settings can be separately determined.
block 506, the settings utilization process 500 is complete and
In such case, the equalization settings can be set in a variety of
different Ways at the host computer 102. For example, for any
45
FIG. 4B is an exemplary diagram of another settings modi
?cation screen 450 according to one embodiment of the
invention. The settings modi?cation screen 450 represents a
50
display screen that can be utilized to modify operational
settings ofa client device (e.g., block 304 of FIG. 3). In this
embodiment, the settings modi?cation screen 450 pertains to
a display screen provided by a media management applica
tion. The settings modi?cation screen 450 includes tab selec
tors 452, 454, 456 and 458. The tab selector 452 pertains to
55
equalization settings, the tab selector 454 pertains to repeat
settings, the tab selector 456 pertains to shuffle settings, and
the tab selector 458 pertains to audio books. As depicted in
FIG. 4B, the settings modi?cation screen 450 pertains to a
shuf?e settings 460, since the tab selector 456 has been cho
ends.
FIG. 6 is a block diagram of a media management system
600 according to one embodiment of the invention. The
media management system 600 includes a host computer 602
and a media player 604. The host computer 602 is, for
example, an implementation of the host computer 102 illus
trated in FIG. 1. The media player 604 is, for example, an
implementation of the client device 104 illustrated in FIG. 1.
The host computer 602, among other conventional compo
nents, includes a management module 606 Which is a soft
60
Ware module. The management module 606 provides for
centralized management of media items (and/ or playlists) not
only on the host computer 602 but also on the media player
604. More particularly, the management module 606 man
sen. The shuf?e settings 460 alloWs the user to indicate
ages those media items stored in a media store 608 associated
Whether and What type of shuf?e they desire to be utilized
With the client device. In this example, the user is presented
With the host computer 602. The management module 606
65
also interacts With a media database 610 to store media infor
With three options for shuf?e settings 460. The ?rst settings
mation associated With the media items stored in the media
option is “Off” and corresponds to a selector 462. When
store 608.
US 8,396,948 B2
10
media database 622. Typically, the media information of
interest corresponds to the media items to be played by the
The media information pertains to characteristics or
attributes of the media items. For example, in the case of
audio or audiovisual media, the media information can
include one or more of: title, album, track, artist, composer
and genre. These types of media information are speci?c to
play module 624.
In one embodiment, the media player 604 has limited or no
capability to manage media items on the media player 604.
HoWever, the management module 606 Within the host com
puter 602 can indirectly manage the media items residing on
the media player 604. For example, to “add” a media item to
the media player 604, the management module 606 serves to
identify the media item to be added to the media player 604
particular media items. In addition, the media information
can pertain to quality characteristics of the media items.
Examples of quality characteristics of media items can
include one or more of: bit rate, sample rate, equalizer setting,
volume adjustment, start/ stop and total time.
Still further, the host computer 602 includes a play module
from the media store 608 and then causes the identi?ed media
item to be delivered to the media player 604. As another
612. The play module 612 is a softWare module that can be
utiliZed to play certain media items stored in the media store
example, to “delete” a media item from the media player 604,
the management module 606 serves to identify the media item
608. The play module 612 can also display (on a display
screen) or otherWise utiliZe media information from the
media database 610. Typically, the media information of
interest corresponds to the media items to be played by the
play module 612.
The host computer 602 also includes a communication
module 614 that couples to a corresponding communication
module 616 Within the media player 604.A connection or link
to be deleted from the media store 608 and then causes the
identi?ed media item to be deleted from the media player 604.
As still another example, if changes (i.e., alterations) to char
acteristics of a media item Were made at the host computer
602 using the management module 606, then such character
20
618 removably couples the communication modules 614 and
616. In one embodiment, the connection or link 618 is a cable
that provides a data bus, such as a FIREWIRETM bus or USB
bus, Which is Well knoWn in the art. In another embodiment,
25
the connection or link 618 is a Wireless channel or connection
through a Wireless netWork. Hence, depending on implemen
tation, the communication modules 614 and 616 may com
municate in a Wired or Wireless manner.
The management module 606 can also operate to set opera
30
tional settings for use on the media player 604. The settings
process 300 are examples of processing that might be utiliZed
in this regard. The operational settings (or operational set
tional settings data) can be received by the communication
module 616 and then stored in the media store 620, the media
database 622 or other storage. Thereafter, the media player
example, be stored in the media store 608, the media database
610 or other storage. The management module 606 and/or the
604, e.g., the play module 624, can utiliZe the operational
settings (or operational settings data) When operating.
40
operational settings (or operational settings data) to the media
player 604.
Optionally, the media player 604 can also enable a user to
directly set one or more operational settings. Hence, some
operational settings can be set at the host computer 602 and
provided to the media player 604, While other operational
The media player 604 also includes a media store 620 that
stores media items Within the media player 604. Optionally,
the media store 620 can also store data, i.e., non-media item
storage. The media items being stored to the media store 620
are typically received over the connection or link 618 from the
puter 602 through management of the playlists residing on the
host computer can indirectly manage the playlists residing on
the media player 604. In this regard, additions, deletions or
At the media player 604, the operational settings (or opera
35
the operational settings (or operational settings data) can, for
communication module 614 can also operate to transfer the
during synchronization of the media items on the media
player 604 With the media items on the host computer 602.
In another embodiment, the media player 604 has limited
or no capability to manage playlists on the media player 604.
HoWever, the management module 606 Within the host com
changes to playlists can be performed on the host computer
602 and then be carried over to the media player 604 When
delivered thereto.
management processing 200 and the settings modi?cation
tings data) for use With the client device can be set and then
stored on the host computer 602. At the host computer 602,
istics can also be carried over to the corresponding media item
on the media player 604. In one implementation, the addi
tions, deletions and/or changes occur in a batch-like process
45
settings can be set locally at the media player 604. In one
embodiment, the media player 604 enables a user to override
or alter the operational settings provided by the host com
puter.
The ability to remotely set operational settings at the host
computer 602 and then provide them to the media player 604
ho st computer 602. More particularly, the management mod
ule 606 sends all or certain of those media items residing on
the media store 608 over the connection or link 618 to the 50 can be restricted so as to prevent data exchange When the host
media store 620 Within the media player 604. Additionally,
the corresponding media information for the media items that
computer and media player do not recogniZe one another.
According to one embodiment, When a media player is ?rst
is also delivered to the media player 604 from the host com
puter 602 can be stored in a media database 622. In this
connected to a host computer (or even more generally When
matching identi?ers are not present), the user of the media
player is queried as to Whether the user desires to af?liate,
assign or lock the media player to the host computer. When
the user of the media player elects to af?liate, assign or lock
regard, certain media information from the media database
55
610 Within the host computer 602 can be sent to the media
database 622 Within the media player 604 over the connection
the media player With the host computer, then a pseudo
random identi?er is obtained and stored in either the media
or link 618. Still further, playlists identifying certain of the
media items can also be sent by the management module 606
over the connection or link 618 to the media store 620 or the 60 database or a ?le Within both the ho st computer and the media
media database 622 Within the media player 604.
Furthermore, the media player 604 includes a play module
624 that couples to the media store 620 and the media data
player. In one implementation, the identi?er is an identi?er
associated With (e. g., knoWn or generated by) the host com
puter or its management module and such identi?er is sent to
base 622. The play module 624 is a softWare module that can
be utiliZed to play certain media items stored in the media
store 620. The play module 624 can also display (on a display
screen) or otherWise utiliZe media information from the
65
and stored in the media player. In another implementation, the
identi?er is associated With (e.g., knoWn or generated by) the
media player and is sent to and stored in a ?le or media
database of the host computer.
US 8,396,948 B2
11
12
FIG. 7 is a block diagram of a media player 700 according
to one embodiment of the invention. The media player 700
tion, the media device is a hand-held device that is siZed for
placement into a pocket or hand of the user. By being hand
includes a processor 702 that pertains to a microprocessor or
held, the media device is relatively small and easily handled
and utiliZed by its user. By being pocket siZed, the user does
controller for controlling the overall operation of the media
player 700. The media player 700 stores media data pertain
not have to directly carry the media device and therefore the
media device can be taken almost anyWhere the user travels.
ing to media items in a ?le system 704 and a cache 706. The
?le system 704 is, typically, a storage disk or a plurality of
Furthermore, the media device may be operated by the user’ s
disks. The ?le system 704 typically provides high capacity
hands Without the need for a reference surface such as a
storage capability for the media player 700. The ?le system
desktop.
704 can store not only media data but also non-media data
In general, the media player can correspond to one or more
(e. g., When operated in a disk mode). HoWever, since the
of: a music player, game player, video player, camera, mobile
access time to the ?le system 704 is relatively sloW, the media
player 700 can also include a cache 706. The cache 706 is, for
telephone (e.g., cell phone), personal digital assistant (PDA),
example, Random-Access Memory (RAM) provided by
semiconductor memory. The relative access time to the cache
US. application Ser. No. 11/535,646, (now US. Pat. No.
7,706,637) ?led Sep. 27, 2006, and entitled “HOST CON
706 is substantially shorter than for the ?le system 704. HoW
ever, the cache 706 does not have the large storage capacity of
PORTABLE MEDIA PLAYER DEVICE,” is hereby incor
and/or the like.
FIGURED FOR INTEROPERATION WITH COUPLED
porated herein by reference. US. application Ser. No. 10/973,
925, (now US. Pat. No. 7,680,849) ?led Oct. 25, 2004, and
the ?le system 704. Further, the ?le system 704, When active,
consumes more poWer than does the cache 706. The poWer
consumption is often a concern When the media player 700 is
20
a portable media player that is poWered by a battery (not
entitled “MULTIPLE MEDIA TYPE SYNCHRONIZA
TION BETWEEN HOST COMPUTER AND MEDIA
shoWn). The media player 700 also includes a RAM 720 and
a Read-Only Memory (ROM) 722. The ROM 722 can store
DEVICE,” is hereby incorporated herein by reference.
programs, utilities or processes to be executed in a non
features of the invention can be used separately or in any
combination.
volatile manner. The RAM 720 provides volatile data storage,
The various aspects, embodiments, implementations or
25
The invention is preferably implemented by softWare, but
such as for the cache 706.
The media player 700 also includes a user input device 708
that alloWs a user of the media player 700 to interact With the
media player 700. For example, the user input device 708 can
take a variety of forms, such as a button, keypad, dial, etc. Still
can also be implemented in hardWare or a combination of
hardWare and softWare. The invention can also be embodied
as computer readable code on a computer readable medium.
30
further, the media player 700 includes a display 710 (screen
display) that can be controlled by the processor 702 to display
system. Examples of the computer readable medium include
read-only memory, random-access memory, CD-ROMs,
DVDs, magnetic tape, optical data storage devices, and car
information to the user. A data bus 711 can facilitate data
transfer betWeen at least the ?le system 704, the cache 706,
the processor 702, and the CODEC 712.
35
In one embodiment, the media player 700 serves to store a
plurality of media items (e.g., songs) in the ?le system 704.
When a user desires to have the media player play a particular
media item, a list of available media items is displayed on the
display 710. Then, using the user input device 708, a user can
select one of the available media items. The processor 702,
40
to a coder/decoder (CODEC) 712. The CODEC 712 then
45
714 can be a speaker internal to the media player 700 or
external to the media player 700. For example, headphones or
earphones that connect to the media player 700 Would be
considered an external speaker.
The media player 700 also includes a netWork/bus interface
rier Waves. The computer readable medium can also be dis
tributed over netWork-coupled computer systems so that the
computer readable code is stored and executed in a distributed
fashion.
The advantages of the invention are numerous. Different
aspects, embodiments or implementations may yield one or
more of the folloWing advantages. One advantage of the
invention is that operational settings to be utiliZed by a client
device (e.g., portable media device) can be remotely set at a
upon receiving a selection of a particular media item, supplies
the media data (e. g., audio ?le) for the particular media item
produces analog output signals for a speaker 714. The speaker
The computer readable medium is any data storage device
that can store data Which can thereafter be read by a computer
host computer. This avoids or reduces the need for the client
device to support user interaction to set such operational
settings. A host computer can also offer a user interface for
controlling operational settings that is often larger and more
50
sophisticated than Would otherWise be available on a client
device.
The many features and advantages of the present invention
are apparent from the Written description and, thus, it is
intended by the appended claims to cover all such features
and advantages of the invention. Further, since numerous
modi?cations and changes Will readily occur to those skilled
716 that couples to a data link 718. The data link 718 alloWs
the media player 700 to couple to a host computer. The data
link 718 can be provided over a Wired connection or a Wireless
connection. In the case of a Wireless connection, the netWork/
bus interface 716 can include a Wireless transceiver.
55 in the art, the invention should not be limited to the exact
construction and operation as illustrated and described.
The media items (or media assets) can be audio items (e.g.,
audio ?les or songs), videos (e.g., movies) or images (e.g.,
Hence, all suitable modi?cations and equivalents may be
photos).
In one embodiment, the client device/media player is a
portable media device dedicated to processing media such as
resorted to as falling Within the scope of the invention.
What is claimed is:
60
1. A method for remotely providing operational settings
audio, video and/or images. For example, the media device
from a host device to a client device, the host device having a
can be a music player (e.g., MP3 player), a game player, a
video player, a video recorder, a camera, an image vieWer and
display, the method comprising:
determining, at the host device, operational settings sup
ported by the client device;
the like. These devices are generally battery operated and
highly portable so as to alloW a user to listen to music, play
65
enabling, at the host device, display screens that corre
games or video, record video, play video, take pictures or
spond only to operational settings supported by the cli
vieW pictures Wherever the user travels. In one implementa
ent device, Wherein the display screens present user
US 8,396,948 B2
14
13
such that the client device operates in accordance With
interfaces presenting a list of selectable operational set
tings for the client device, Wherein the client device
the user selectable operational setting independent of the
host device.
lacks an interface for altering the operational settings,
Wherein the list of selectable operational settings com
2. The method of claim 1, further comprising receiving
client device information from the client device.
3. The method of claim 2, Wherein the client device infor
mation pertains to softWare features available at the client
device.
4. The method of claim 2, Wherein the client media device
information pertains to hardWare features available at the
client device.
5. The method of claim 2, Wherein the client media device
information includes a type indication for the client device.
prise only those operational settings determined to be
supported by the client media device;
receiving a user selection of at least one operational setting
for the client device;
establishing a communication link betWeen the host device
and the client device by the host device;
sending the operational settings from the ho st device to the
6. The method as recited in claim 1, Wherein the at least one
client device over the communication channel, the
operational settings causing the client device to persis
tently run using the user-selected operational setting,
operational setting is a sound check setting.
until the host device is subsequently utiliZed to alter the
operational setting is a clicker setting.
7. The method as recited in claim 1, Wherein the at least one
8. The method as recited in claim 1, Wherein the at least one
user-selected operational setting; and
operational setting is a language setting.
terminating the communication link by the host device
once the host device has determined that the client
device is persistently running using the user selected
operational setting sent over the communication channel
9. The method as recited in claim 1, Wherein the at least one
20
operational setting is a menu con?guration setting.
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