Digital television with subscriber conference overlay

  • US 6,339,842 B1
  • Filed: 06/10/1998
  • Issued: 01/15/2002
  • Est. Priority Date: 06/10/1998
  • Status: Expired due to Term
First Claim
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1. In a digital television system comprising a plurality of receivers coupled to a program source, a method for providing subscriber conferencing with program delivery comprising the steps of:

  • coupling a program source to a plurality of digital television (DTV) receivers;

    delivering a program from the program source to the DTV receivers coupled thereto; and

    enabling a conference between the coupled DTV receivers during program delivery, the conference comprising a video conference session being conducted between such coupled DTV receivers, each DTV receiver comprising a video camera and a display, such coupled DTV receivers being associated with a plurality of selected subscribers belonging to a logical group, the conference being enabled within the logical group simultaneously with the program delivery to the selected subscribers of the logical group, the display of each coupled DTV receiver displaying the delivered program and at least one selected subscriber in the conference, whereby collaboration is effectively enabled by video conferencing among the selected subscribers while a common program is delivered simultaneously to such selected subscribers.

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