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Details for Patent: 8,892,066

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Details for Patent: 8,892,066

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 (Arlington, VA)
Filing Date:Dec 06, 2013
Application Number:14/098,863
Claims:1. A communication method, comprising: allocating a communication channel on a base station antenna for use by a tiered priority access (TPA) authorized mobile device; allowing general access to the communication channel so long as no call is made from or to the TPA-authorized mobile device; monitoring the allocated communication channel to determine whether call volume is at or near capacity of the allocated communication channel; monitoring incoming and outgoing calls to determine whether a new call is to or from the TPA-authorized mobile device; disconnecting an ongoing general access call using the allocated communication channel in response to determining that call volume is at or near capacity and determining that a new call is to or from the TPA-authorized mobile device; and connecting the new call to or from the TPA-authorized mobile device via the allocated communication channel in response to disconnecting the ongoing general access call.

2. The communication method of claim 1, wherein determining whether a new call is to or from the TPA-authorized mobile device comprises determining that the new call is from the TPA-authorized mobile device to a general-access mobile device, the method further comprising: determining whether the general-access mobile device is inside a cell zone implementing TPA capabilities; and using the allocated communication channel to route the call from the TPA-authorized mobile device to the general-access mobile device when it is determined that the general-access mobile device is inside the cell zone implementing TPA capabilities.

3. The communication method of claim 2, wherein disconnecting an ongoing general access call using the allocated communication channel in response to determining that call volume is at or near capacity and determining that the new call is to or from the TPA-authorized mobile device comprises: disconnecting an ongoing general access call to a device outside of the cell zone implementing TPA capabilities prior to using the allocated communication channel to route the call from the TPA-authorized mobile device to the general-access mobile device inside the cell zone implementing TPA capabilities.

4. The communication method of claim 1, wherein allocating a communication channel on a base station antenna for use by a TPA authorized mobile device comprises: determining whether a mobile device is a TPA-authorized device from a mobile device identification value input on the mobile device; and allocating the communication channel on the base station antenna to the mobile device in response to determining that the mobile device is a TPA-authorized device.

5. The communication method of claim 1, further comprising: automatically allocating additional communication channels for use by mobile devices of authorized emergency personnel in response to determining that call volume is at or near capacity and that the new call is to or from the TPA authorized mobile device.

6. The communication method of claim 5, further comprising: automatically sending a communication message to a plurality of TPA authorized mobile devices in a coverage area of the allocated communication channels notifying them of the availability of telecommunication network resources.

7. The communication method of claim 6, wherein automatically sending the communication message comprises automatically sending at least one of a short message service (SMS) message and a multimedia messaging service (MMS) message.

8. The communication method of claim 6, further comprising: automatically sending a communication message to a plurality of general access users within a coverage area of the allocated communication channels in response to determining that call volume is at or near capacity and that the new call is to or from the TPA authorized mobile device.

9. A server for use in a cellular communication system, comprising: a processor configured to communicate with a plurality of base stations of the cellular communication system, wherein the processor is configured with processor-executable instructions to perform operations comprising: allocating a communication channel on a base station antenna for use by a tiered priority access (TPA) authorized mobile device; allowing general access to the communication channel so long as no call is made from or to the TPA authorized mobile device; monitoring the allocated communication channel to determine whether call volume is at or near capacity of the allocated communication channel; monitoring incoming and outgoing calls to determine whether a new call is to or from the TPA authorized mobile device; disconnecting an ongoing general access call using the allocated communication channel in response to determining that call volume is at or near capacity and determining that a new call is to or from the TPA authorized mobile device; and connecting the new call to or from the TPA authorized mobile device via the allocated communication channel in response to disconnecting the ongoing general access call.

10. The server of claim 9, wherein the processor is configured with processor-executable instructions to perform operations such that allocating a communication channel on a base station antenna for use by a TPA authorized mobile device comprises: determining whether a mobile device is a TPA-authorized device from a mobile device identification value input on the mobile device; and allocating the communication channel on the base station antenna to the mobile device in response to determining that the mobile device is a TPA-authorized device.

11. The server of claim 9, wherein the processor is configured with processor-executable instructions to perform operations further comprising: automatically allocating additional communication channels for use by mobile devices of authorized emergency personnel in response to determining that call volume is at or near capacity and that the new call is to or from the TPA authorized mobile device.

12. The server of claim 11, wherein the processor is configured with processor-executable instructions to perform operations further comprising: automatically sending a communication message to a plurality of mobile devices in a coverage area of the allocated communication channels notifying them of the availability of telecommunication network resources.

13. The server of claim 12, wherein the processor is configured with processor-executable instructions to perform operations such that automatically sending the communication message comprises automatically sending at least one of a short message service (SMS) message and a multimedia messaging service (MMS) message.

14. The server of claim 11, wherein the processor is configured with processor-executable instructions to perform operations such that further comprising: automatically sending a communication message to a plurality of general access users within a coverage area of the allocated communication channels in response to determining that call volume is at or near capacity and that the new call is to or from the TPA authorized mobile device.

15. A non-transitory processor-readable storage medium having stored thereon processor-executable software instructions configured to cause a processor in a cellular communication network to perform operations comprising: allocating a communication channel on a base station antenna for use by a tiered priority access (TPA) authorized mobile device; allowing general access to the communication channel so long as no call is made from or to the TPA authorized mobile device; monitoring the allocated communication channel to determine whether call volume is at or near capacity of the allocated communication channel; monitoring incoming and outgoing calls to determine whether a new call is to or from the TPA authorized mobile device; disconnecting an ongoing general access call using the allocated communication channel in response to determining that call volume is at or near capacity and determining that a new call is to or from the TPA authorized mobile device; and connecting the new call to or from the TPA authorized mobile device via the allocated communication channel in response to disconnecting the ongoing general access call.

16. The non-transitory processor-readable storage medium of claim 15, wherein the stored processor-executable software instructions are configured to cause a processor in the cellular communication network to perform operations such that allocating a communication channel on a base station antenna for use by a TPA authorized mobile device comprises: determining whether a mobile device is a TPA-authorized device from a mobile device identification value input on the mobile device; and allocating the communication channel on the base station antenna to the mobile device in response to determining that the mobile device is a TPA-authorized device.

17. The non-transitory processor-readable storage medium of claim 15, wherein the stored processor-executable software instructions are configured to cause a server in the cellular communication network to perform operations further comprising: automatically allocating additional communication channels for use by mobile devices of authorized emergency personnel in response to determining that call volume is at or near capacity and that the new call is to or from the TPA authorized mobile device.

18. The non-transitory processor-readable storage medium of claim 17, wherein the stored processor-executable software instructions are configured to cause a server in the cellular communication network to perform operations further comprising: automatically sending a communication message to a plurality of mobile devices in a coverage area of the allocated communication channels notifying them of the availability of telecommunication network resources.

19. The non-transitory processor-readable storage medium of claim 18, wherein the stored processor-executable software instructions are configured to cause a server in the cellular communication network to perform operations such that automatically sending the communication message comprises automatically sending at least one of a short message service (SMS) message and a multimedia messaging service (MMS) message.

20. The non-transitory processor-readable storage medium of claim 17, wherein the stored processor-executable software instructions are configured to cause a server in the cellular communication network to perform operations further comprising: automatically sending a communication message to a plurality of general access users within a coverage area of the allocated communication channels in response to determining that call volume is at or near capacity and that the new call is to or from the TPA authorized mobile device.
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