April 23, 2007

Enhanced Call Processing

One of the patents that Verizon was able to successfully assert against Vonage in their recent and widely discussed patent suit is the patent number 6,104,711. The main aim of the invention is to replicate the AIN like services for “Internet Telephony”. As the patent itself describes in layman terms, the idea is to map a domain name based address to different IP address based on some conditions. It seems incredulous that people working on H.323, especially given that most of the participants were from incumbent telephone service providers, would not have considered this.

In a recent post Jeff points out that in the first implementation of FWD, he had implemented “conditional analysis” that is fundamental for AIN-like services. He also refers to a book that he authored TWO MONTHS BEFORE the patent was filed – “The Internet Telephony Toolkit”. I do not have a copy of the book, but we can view the contents of the book at Amazon. There are section titles from which one can clearly infer that those services would have used “conditional analysis”: The Growth of Voice Mail Delivered over the Internet (Chapter 4), Offline Voice Mail (Chapter 7), Party-Specific Call Blocking (Chapter 7).

Also I thought DNS allows for one to have records with “weight”. I will argue that it is a form of “conditional analysis”; but I am not sure whether that constitutes prior art. It is important to ascertain the ownership of “conditional analysis”; otherwise nothing of consequence could be provided from a central server.

Posted by aswath at April 23, 2007 05:34 AM
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