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Details for Patent: 8,275,349

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Details for Patent: 8,275,349

Title:Method and system for providing tiered priority access to communication network resources
Abstract: Methods and systems automatically allocate cellular communication network resources to emergency response personnel during emergency situations which are detected by call volumes exceeding a predetermined maximum. Access to cellular communication network resources is provided by dedicating a portion of communication channels to emergency response personnel use. By reserving whole communication channels for emergency communication purposes, emergency personnel are able to both initiate and receive calls from both other mobile devices as well as conventional landline telephone stations. Qualified emergency response personnel can preregistered their phones and be assigned personal identification numbers to enable access to allocated network resources. Users can also be registered "on the fly."
Inventor(s): Smith; Clint (Warwick, NY)
Assignee: Rivada Networks, LLC (Centreville, VA)
Filing Date:Nov 18, 2008
Application Number:12/273,146
Claims:1. A method for providing wireless communication resources during an emergency incident comprising: monitoring a wireless network call volume; determining whether the wireless network call volume exceeds a first pre-determined threshold; partitioning the wireless network resources for emergency usage if use by mobile devices of emergency personnel when the wireless network call volume exceeds the first pre-determined threshold; reserving at least a portion of the partitioned wireless network resources for emergency usage use by mobile devices of authorized emergency personnel; monitoring incoming and outgoing calls to determine whether a call is made from or to an authorized emergency personnel mobile device; allowing general access to the partitioned and reserved wireless network resources so long as no call is made from or to an authorized emergency personnel mobile device; and restricting access to the partitioned and reserved wireless network resource to authorized emergency personnel mobile devices if the in response to determining that a call is made from or to an authorized emergency personnel mobile device.

2. The method of claim 1, wherein monitoring incoming and outgoing calls to determine whether a call is made from or to an authorized emergency personnel mobile device comprises: determining if whether a call is to or from a pre-registered mobile device.

3. The method of claim 1, wherein monitoring incoming and outgoing calls to determine whether a call is made from or to an authorized emergency personnel mobile device comprises: recognizing a call made with a special dialing procedure; extracting a personal identification number (PIN) from numbers entered in the special dialing procedure; comparing the PIN to a database of PINs; and granting access to the partitioned and reserved wireless network resource if the PIN matches an entry in the database of PINs.

4. The method of claim 1, further comprising: monitoring the call volume on the partitioned and reserved wireless network resource; determining whether the call volume on the partitioned and reserved wireless network resource exceeds a second pre-determined threshold; and restricting access to additional partitioned and reserved wireless network resources to the authorized emergency personnel mobile devices in response to the call volume on the partitioned and reserved wireless network resource exceeding the second pre-determined threshold.

5. The method of claim 1, further comprising: determining whether the call volume on the partitioned and reserved wireless network resource is less than a third pre-determined minimum; and automatically allowing general access to a previously restricted, partitioned and reserved wireless network resource to mobile devices in response to the call volume on the restricted, partitioned and reserved network resource being less than the third pre-determined minimum.

6. The method of claim 1, further comprising: notifying mobile devices serviced by a wireless network cell of an emergency incident; and requesting in the notification of the emergency incident that non-emergency personnel limit wireless network usage.

7. The method of claim 1, further comprising: notifying mobile devices serviced by the allocated network resource that an in progress call and data session will be terminated; and terminating the in progress call and data session.

8. The method of claim 1, further comprising: notifying a user of a mobile device serviced by the allocated network resource that an in progress call and data session will be terminated; allowing the user of the notified mobile device to override termination by entering a Personal Identification Number (PIN); and terminating the progress call and data session in response to a valid PIN not being entered within a predetermined amount of time.

9. The method of claim 3, further comprising: tracking mobile devices from which a call was made using the special dialing procedure was entered; and treating such mobile devices as pre-registered mobile devices for a limited duration.

10. An emergency cellular communication system, comprising: a plurality of base stations which include a plurality of communication channels, each of the plurality of communication channels being capable of establishing voice and data telecommunications links with mobile devices; a central processor coupled to the plurality of base stations; a central processor memory coupled to the central processor, wherein the central processor memory has stored therein software instructions configured to cause the central processor to perform operations comprising: monitoring a wireless network call volume at each of the plurality of base stations; determining whether the wireless network call volume at any of the plurality of base stations exceeds a first pre-determined threshold; partitioning the communication channels for emergency usage if use by mobile devices of emergency personnel at the one or more of the plurality of base stations where wireless network call volume exceeds the first pre-determined threshold; reserving at least a portion of the partitioned communication channels for emergency usage use by the mobile devices of authorized emergency personnel; monitoring incoming and outgoing calls at the one or more of the plurality of base stations where wireless network call volume exceeds the first pre-determined threshold to determine whether a call is made from or to an authorized emergency personnel mobile device; allowing general access to the partitioned and reserved communication channels so long as no call is made from or to an authorized emergency personnel mobile device; and restricting access to the partitioned and reserved communication channels to authorized emergency personnel mobile devices if the in response to determining that a call is made from or to an authorized emergency personnel mobile device.

11. The emergency cellular communication system of claim 10, wherein the stored software instructions are configured to cause the central processor to determine whether a call is made from or to any an authorized emergency personnel mobile device further cause the central processor to perform operations comprising: determining whether a call is to or from a pre-registered mobile device.

12. The emergency cellular communication system of claim 10, wherein the stored software instructions are configured to cause the central processor to determine whether a call is made from or to an authorized emergency personnel mobile device further cause the central processor to perform operations comprising: recognizing a call made with a special dialing procedure; extracting a personal identification number (PIN) from numbers entered in the special dialing procedure; comparing the PIN to a database of PINs; and granting access to the partitioned and reserved wireless network resource when the PIN matches an entry in the database of PINs.

13. The emergency cellular communication system of claim 10, wherein the stored software instructions are configured to cause the central processor to perform further operations comprising: monitoring the call volume on the partitioned and reserved communication channel; determining whether the call volume on the partitioned and reserved communication channel exceeds a second pre-determined threshold; and restricting access to additional partitioned and reserved communication channels to the authorized emergency personnel mobile devices if in response to the call volume on the partitioned and reserved communication channel exceeding the second pre-determined threshold.

14. The emergency cellular communication system of claim 10, wherein the stored software instructions are configured to cause the central processor to perform further operations comprising: determining whether the call volume on the partitioned and reserved communication channel is less than a third pre-determined minimum; and automatically allowing general access to a previously restricted, partitioned and reserved communication channel to mobile devices in response to the call volume on the restricted, partitioned and reserved communication channel being less than the third pre-determined minimum.

15. The emergency cellular communication system of claim 10, wherein the stored software instructions are configured to cause the central processor to perform further operations comprising: notifying mobile devices serviced by the one of the plurality of base stations of an emergency incident; and requesting in the notification of the emergency incident that non-emergency personnel limit wireless network usage.

16. The emergency cellular communication system of claim 10, wherein the stored software instructions are configured to cause the central processor to perform further operations comprising: notifying a user of a mobile devices serviced by the allocated communication channel that an in progress call and data session will be terminated; allowing the user of the notified mobile device to override termination by entering a Personal Identification Number (PIN); and terminating the in progress call and data sessions in response to a valid PIN not being entered within a predetermined amount of time.

17. The emergency cellular communication system of claim 12, wherein the stored therein software instructions are configured to cause the central processor to perform further operations comprising: tracking mobile devices from which a call was made using the special dialing procedure was entered; and treating such mobile devices as pre-registered mobile devices for a limited duration.

18. A non-transitory processor-readable tangible storage medium having stored thereon processor-executable software instructions configured to cause a processor in a cellular communication network to perform operations comprising: monitoring a wireless network call volume at a base station; determining whether the wireless network call volume at the base station exceeds a first pre-determined threshold; partitioning communication channels for emergency usage if use by mobile devices of emergency personnel when the wireless network call volume at the base station exceeds the first pre-determined threshold; reserving at least a portion of the partitioned communication channels for emergency usage use by mobile devices of authorized emergency personnel; monitoring incoming and outgoing calls at the base station to determine whether a call is made from or to an authorized emergency personnel mobile device; allowing general access to the partitioned and reserved communication channels so long as no call is made from or to an authorized emergency personnel mobile device; and restricting access to the partitioned and reserved communication channels to authorized emergency personnel mobile devices if the in response to determining that a call is made from or to an authorized emergency personnel mobile device.

19. The non-transitory processor-readable tangible storage medium of claim 18, wherein the stored software instructions are configured to cause the processor to perform operations such that determining whether a call is made from or to an authorized emergency personnel mobile device comprises: determining whether a call is to or from a pre-registered mobile device.

20. The non-transitory processor-readable tangible storage medium of claim 18, wherein the stored software instructions are configured to cause the processor to perform operations such that determining whether a call is made from or to an authorized emergency personnel mobile device further comprises: recognizing a call made with a special dialing procedure; extracting a personal identification number (PIN) from numbers entered in the special dialing procedure; comparing the PIN to a database of PINs; and granting access to the partitioned and reserved communication channel when the PIN matches an entry in the database of PINs.

21. The non-transitory processor-readable tangible storage medium of claim 18, wherein the stored software instructions are configured to cause the processor to perform further operations comprising: monitoring the call volume on the partitioned and reserved communication channel; determining whether the call volume on the partitioned and reserved communication channel exceeds a second pre-determined threshold; and restricting access to additional partitioned and reserved communication channels to the authorized emergency personnel mobile device in response to the call volume on the partitioned and reserved communication channel exceeding the second pre-determined threshold.

22. The non-transitory processor-readable tangible storage medium of claim 18, wherein the stored software instructions are configured to cause the processor to perform further operations comprising: determining whether the call volume on the partitioned and reserved communication channel is less than a third pre-determined minimum; and automatically allowing general mobile devices to access a previously restricted, partitioned and reserved communication channel to in response to the call volume on the restricted, partitioned and reserved communication channel being less than the third pre-determined minimum.

23. The non-transitory processor-readable tangible storage medium of claim 18, wherein the stored software instructions are configured to cause the processor to perform further operations comprising: notifying mobile devices serviced by the one of the plurality of base stations of an emergency incident; and requesting in the notification of the emergency incident that non-emergency personnel limit wireless network usage.

24. The non-transitory processor-readable tangible storage medium of claim 18, wherein the stored software instructions are configured to cause the processor to perform further operations comprising: notifying a user of a mobile devices serviced by the allocated communication channel that an in progress call and data session will be terminated; allowing the user of the notified mobile device to override termination by entering a Personal Identification Number (PIN); and terminating the in progress call and data session in response to a valid PIN not being entered within a predetermined amount of time.

25. The non-transitory processor-readable tangible storage medium of claim 20, wherein the stored software instructions are configured to cause the processor to perform further operations comprising: tracking mobile devices from which a call was made using the special dialing procedure was entered; and treating such mobile devices as pre-registered mobile devices for a limited duration.
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