Tiered wireless, multi-modal access system and method

  • US 6,961,584 B2
  • Filed: 03/21/2001
  • Issued: 11/01/2005
  • Est. Priority Date: 03/22/2000
  • Status: Expired due to Term
First Claim
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1. A communication system for integrating a plurality of wireless communication networks capable of independent operation to form an integrated communication grid whose overall capacity to handle demand for service is maximized by coordinated control of access, comprisinga. a plurality of wireless communication networks providing service to users in overlapping geographic areas, said wireless communication networks using different communication modes and operating at different broadcast strengths to form different tiers of successively greater effective broadcast areas to serve ever greater geoaraghic areas with the first tier having the greatest geographic broadcast area and the last tier having the smallest broadast area, b. a plurality of portable wireless, multi-modal access devices, each said access device being capable of operating in at least some of the plurality of communication modes compatible with said communication networks and being capable of establishing a communication session over a first communication link using any one of said communication networks while operating in a compatible communication mode, and c. a system for coordinating requests for service by said access devices to cause wireless communication links to be established, respectively, using the communication network that has the capability of providing the services requested and that is within the tier serving the smallest possible geographic broadcast area thereby to use more efficiently the available radio spectrum by driving users to the networks serving the smallest broadcast areas.

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