Apple wants to simplify transfer of media status info
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Apple wants to simplify transfer of media status info

Apple has applied for a patent (number 20120137028) involving a method and system for transferring status information between a media player and an accessory.

The method includes determining, by the accessory, when a button event occurs; and transmitting, by the accessory, at least one button status command to the media player, where the one or more button status commands comprise a context-specific button status command and at least one command associated with a particular media type. According to the method and system disclosed herein, the media player and accessory may utilize a plurality of commands in a variety of environments such as within a connector interface system environment to facilitate the transfer of status information.

Here's Apple's background and summary of the invention: "A media player stores media assets, such as audio tracks or photos that can be played or displayed on the media player. One example of a media player is the iPod media player, which is available from Apple Inc. of Cupertino, Calif. Often, a media player acquires its media assets from a host computer that serves to enable a user to manage media assets. As an example, the host computer can execute a media management application to manage media assets. One example of a media management application is iTunes, version 6.0, produced by Apple Inc.

"A media player typically includes one or more connectors or ports that can be used to interface to the media player. For example, the connector or port can enable the media player to couple to a host computer, be inserted into a docking system, or receive an accessory device. There are today many different types of accessory devices that can interconnect to the media player. For example, a remote control can be connected to the connector or port to allow the user to remotely control the media player. As another example, an automobile can include a connector and the media player can be inserted onto the connector such that an automobile media system can interact with the media player, thereby allowing the media content on the media player to be played within the automobile.

"With the introduction of various media types (images and video), communication between a media player and an accessory may be confusing to end users. Furthermore, it may be difficult to determine, if at all, whether information has been successfully transferred between a media player and an accessory. Thus, there is a need for improved techniques to enable manufacturers of electronic devices to exchange information.

"A method, system, and connector interface for transferring status information between a media player and an accessory is disclosed. The method includes determining, by the accessory, when a button event occurs; and transmitting, by the accessory, at least one button status command to the media player, where the one or more button status commands comprise a context-specific button status command and at least one command associated with a particular media type.

"According to the method and system disclosed herein, the media player and accessory may utilize a plurality of commands utilized in a variety of environments such as within a connector interface system environment to facilitate the transfer of status information."

The inventors are Gregory T. Lydon, Lawrence G. Bolton, Emily C. Schubert, Jesse Dorogusker, Donald J. Novotney, John B. Filson and David Tupman.

 
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