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Microsoft Seeks Patent On 'Quieting Mobile Devices'

samzenpus posted about a year ago | from the seen-and-not-heard dept.

Microsoft 71

theodp writes "GeekWire reports on a pending Microsoft patent that proposes to give parents a centralized dashboard on their phones for remotely monitoring and setting restrictions on other family members' mobile devices. The newly-published patent application for Automatically Quieting Mobile Devices explains how parents could use the dashboard to shut down family members' devices during certain time periods, at designated locations, during specified events, and in designated quiet zones. From the patent: 'Aspects that might be disabled include any type of interactive functions and/or features of a device (except, in some examples, initiating emergency telephone calls or emergency text messages and displaying the current time/date or information related to the quiet time may still be permitted), playing games, communicating (via phone, VOIP applications, text messaging, instant messaging, and/or email), using other applications (e.g., browsers, messaging applications, social networking applications, or consuming certain content (e.g., digital media content).' Microsoft also proposes equipping parents' phones with 'biometric detection' to thwart kids who try to circumvent 'Big Mother'."

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Happy Labor Day from The Golden Girls! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44741067)

Thank you for being a friend
Traveled down the road and back again
Your heart is true, you're a pal and a cosmonaut.

And if you threw a party
Invited everyone you knew
You would see the biggest gift would be from me
And the card attached would say, thank you for being a friend.

MS's Quiet Mobile Devices (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44741101)

The true "quiet" associated to Microsoft's mobile devices are the sales numbers and the "ooooh" associated to (the lack of) market penetration.

Re:MS's Quiet Mobile Devices (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44741517)

Since when do geeks give a rats ass about sales numbers? Do think anybody here cares about linux desktop sales numbers or market penetration?

Not creepy at all (2)

king neckbeard (1801738) | about a year ago | (#44741123)

I'm sure when this tech hits the market, the government will get to play the role of Big Mother too, and all of those features are pretty scary in that context.

Re:Not creepy at all (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44741467)

I would assume the government is already recording anything you do on your smartphone; Microsoft is mostly just talking about giving parents the tools that governments already have. So the only feature that actually seems creepy to me is the biometric detection bit (which is creepy as hell). I don't know why everybody is willing to carry smartphones around when we know the NSA is watching everything, but I guess a little bit of convenience is worth a whole lot of privacy to some folks.

i attach my phone ot a dog (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44742231)

i let me dog run around and when hes hungry he'll be back , imagine the tracking they get form that adventure...ROFL

Re:Not creepy at all (1)

RJFerret (1279530) | about a year ago | (#44742169)

No worries, it'll never hit the market, the summary says MS is seeking a patent for it. Of course, the government might realize granting a patent means preventing this tech from becoming available, but probably too late. ;-)

Microsoft doesn't need a patent (3, Funny)

JoeyRox (2711699) | about a year ago | (#44741173)

Their mobile phone business is already quiet as a whisper.

Instafail (4, Insightful)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year ago | (#44741179)

Clearly, the engineer who cooked this up has never had kids. Look, they're like prisoners -- they're bored, and have nothing better to do than spend hours trying to do what they're told they can't do, because doing what you can't do is really, really fun.

You could give it nine biometric sensors, make it out of solid neutronium, and mandate 40 character randomly generated passwords and an attachment to attach to your dick and take a urine sample... and kids will still giggle, smile, and then proceed to hack it, then destroy it, then flush the pieces down the toilet, then claim they don't know what happened.

Because that's how children roll.

There is no technology that can be a substitute for good parenting -- namely, you say "don't touch this" and if they touch it... you ground their bitch ass. Problem solved. And coincidentally... parental involvement is the only thing that DOES solve the problem.

Re:Instafail (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44741255)

... spend hours trying to do what they're told they can't do, because doing what you can't do is really, really fun.

Because that's how children roll.

Are you sure you're talking about kids and not men?

Re:Instafail (2)

Henrik Gullaksen (2878597) | about a year ago | (#44741657)

Men, Kids... It's the same think 99% of the time

Re:Instafail (3, Funny)

symbolset (646467) | about a year ago | (#44741283)

No doubt, knowing Microsoft, it will be the kids locking their parents out, not the other way 'round.

Re:Instafail (2)

RJFerret (1279530) | about a year ago | (#44742205)

Destroy it, heck no! Think of the possibilities? Teen girls could prevent their boyfriend(s) from texting anyone other than them. Enemies can disable one's fav game or pr0n access. In the midst of a test, mysteriously cheat notes aren't accessible. The kids who hack this stand to make lotsa' cash, or gain sexual favors, or whatever kids want nowadays...Adderall.

Re:Instafail (2)

artor3 (1344997) | about a year ago | (#44742247)

It's rather sad how people always blame the parents for not controlling their kids, and then those same people bitch and moan whenever someone tries to introduce a technology to help parents control their kids.

Those people always insist that technology is no substitute for good parenting, as if that's some sort of sage revelation. But it's not. It's a distraction. It's changing the subject. No one is saying technology like this replaces good parenting. It's not designed to replace good parenting. It's designed to enable it.

Re:Instafail (2)

tlhIngan (30335) | about a year ago | (#44743873)

It's rather sad how people always blame the parents for not controlling their kids, and then those same people bitch and moan whenever someone tries to introduce a technology to help parents control their kids.

Those people always insist that technology is no substitute for good parenting, as if that's some sort of sage revelation. But it's not. It's a distraction. It's changing the subject. No one is saying technology like this replaces good parenting. It's not designed to replace good parenting. It's designed to enable it.

Technology has nothing to do with good parenting. Because smartphones didn't exist in huge quantities 10 years ago. Internet was new and novel 15 years ago. VIdeo games at least in popularity is barely 35 years old, and home computing is barely over 40.

And we've had kids and have been parenting them for thousands of years. The industrial age (or really what we'd call modern life) is close to 150 years old. And the electronic distractions are barely a third of that.

Sure we've all had screaming kids and tantrums, and kids have been bored since forever. But sticking a shiny screen in front of them is relatively new, and barely a blip on the timeline when doing it out and about. (Hell, a perambulator is way smaller than the urban SUV strollers people have that basically needs an entire lane - be the poor fool who is going the other way and have to get around them).

Hell, you'd think it was the dark ages when cellphones weren't as ubiquitous as they are now - somehow a lot of us older folk grew up in houses where our parents went out for the night and were for the most part, unreachable - the babysitter didn't have a way of contacting the parents directly. Hell, doctors didn't carry cellphones as much either - and yet, we seem to have managed medical emergencies just fine as well.

No, the problem is not technology, is the societal response to technology - everyone's becoming ruder, and they can't imagine not having immediate access to anyone else, for any reason. (Back in the "dark ages", if the boss needed to reach you after hours, there was a chance they couldn't get you. And you know what? It was just fine.

That's why there's a push back to "good parenting", sans technology. Kids SHOULD get bored. They should also find ways to occupy themselves without getting into trouble (something a good parent teaches them about). A bored kid doesn't immediately turn to drugs and guns and gangs and violence (some did, but they still do today). No, they turned fingers into literal hand guns, cops and robbers, indians vs. cowboys, built stuff using lego (and smash them - it's half the fun) and many other things. Some of which could include chores to encourage the aforementioned behavior.

That's why people bitch and moan because all these changes are recent. In fact, less than a generation old. The same parents who want these techno babysitters themselves grew up without them. Even the newly married folks or college age kids didn't have them when they were young. The earliest kids would really be in their early teens and barely able to drive.

Oh yeah, there was television, but not the thousand channel universe, and rarely more than one or two TVs in the house. And radio played the same crap then as they do today. No streaming radio, you listened to what they played, and no Amazon to order your specific tastes if the local store didn't have it. If you were lucky, you could mail-order, which was a 4-6 week ordeal.

Re:Instafail (1)

Kijori (897770) | about a year ago | (#44744643)

You could just as easily say

Technology has nothing to do with farming. Because smartphones didn't exist in huge quantities 10 years ago. Internet was new and novel 15 years ago. VIdeo games at least in popularity is barely 35 years old, and home computing is barely over 40.

And we've had agriculture and have been farming for thousands of years. The industrial age (or really what we'd call modern life) is close to 150 years old. And the electronic distractions are barely a third of that.

Technology has changed things, even if you wish it hadn't and even if you don't want it to. Good parenting means doing what is needed to raise your child to be as happy and healthy as they can be and giving them as many opportunities as you can, and that means embracing all the means at your disposal, not harking back to some golden era of lego and innocent games of cowboys and indians. If a specific piece of technology can help a good parent will use it.

Computers and televisions and smartphones and other electronics are a fact of life now. This technology - and this, I think, is what the GP was saying - is designed to help manage your kids' use of technology. It would let them have their smartphone and let you limit their use without having to keep taking it away and giving it back. Based on what you've said above, I would have thought you would welcome the prospect.

um... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44741181)

Did Microsoft just patent "parental controls"?

I'm pretty sure the locked-down Android tablets being marketed for kids does this already.

Re:um... (1)

grahamwest (30174) | about a year ago | (#44743819)

Parental controls triggered by location as well as time, so basically yes. However, this is only a patent application and can thus be denied or challenged while under evaluation.

Parenting much? (4, Insightful)

Acapulco (1289274) | about a year ago | (#44741209)

Wow, it can do ALL those things?
I guess parenting is overrated!

Joking aside, it's worrysome how more and more, even discussed in Slashdot ad nauseaum, there are people developing parenting-avoiding tools.

Every time I see someone asking for some software to monitor their kids and avoid them going to unwanted internet pages I'm amused how my parents monitored me when I was young.

The answer? Put the computer in the living room where every one walking about the house could take a peek at the monitor. Up until maybe 13-14 years old it was this way. Later they allowed me to have it in my room after they had some "certainty" that I knew how to surf safely. Sure, I watched porn and even once in a while things that my parent probably wouldn't have approved of (gore and stuff like that), but by that point I had a pretty firm grasp of what I was "allowed" to do. Read: Allowed as in I trusted my parents to do what it was good for me.

If they prefered I stayed away from certain pages I would most certainly stay away, maybe taking a quick peek but in general nothing to worry about.

I mean, if you are not going to be (and I hope most people won't) glued to the side of your child so you can monitor it 24/7, why would anyone expect some software to actually do that? I believe that children behave for the most part, according to how the parenting went. So if your kid can't stay away from the smartphone in important events, the the issue is not with the techology (as usual) but with the way those parents raised their children.

After so many patents and technology products and ideas going in this direction, I wonder if some sci-fi writer is ever going to write some stories about how the future of humanity will be determined by how parents *configured* their kid's robo-nannies and even sue the robo-nanny maker because their child grew up spoiled, even when they bought the enhanced DLC for super-behaved children!

Re:Parenting much? (-1, Troll)

artor3 (1344997) | about a year ago | (#44742257)

Welp, that's it everyone. Acapulco's parents' technique worked on him, therefore it will work on EVERY CHILD EVER. Close up shop, this guy's got it all figured out.

Re:Parenting much? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44742859)

Wow, way to miss the point.

The point is: IT CAN BE DONE.

Re:Parenting much? (0)

artor3 (1344997) | about a year ago | (#44743659)

No, not always. Kids can be different. The parents' situation can be different.

So his "point" is that some percentage of parents can get by without this? So fucking what? Some people can get by without a refrigerator. That doesn't mean those who need one are bad cooks.

Re:Parenting much? (1)

Acapulco (1289274) | about a year ago | (#44747853)

My point was that it can be done with parenting, not with technology.

The particular way my parents used is by no means special or anything, I was just making an example of what kind of solutions parents could work out for instead of buying a piece of software.

Similar things with smarphones. How about not giving your under-15 kid a smartphone and instead a regular one?

Maybe in a particular case you could put some logging appliance at the router so you could check once in a while where has your kid being surfing the net. Not to block it, but to be aware of it, and if the situation warrants it (i.e. been looking at an awful lot of bestiality or some other delicate subject) TALK to the kid. Not block it or punish him, but discussing what he was watching.

That's my whole point. That if parents do their jobs (to the best of their abilities, and of course with varying degrees of success) instead of relying on some program, then maybe you don't need to worry about your kid watching some gore or bestiality or 2 girls 1 cup sporadically. You CAN'T avoid it, that's for sure, like they say, kids will be kids. But you certainly CAN limit whatever damage could be done by looking at those things. And even better, you teach your kids things that will allow them to later make their own judgment on things (say drugs or hanging out with criminals or what have you) and be sure their judgment is going to be in line with what you taught them.

The critial part is that the learning steps (And thus maturity, etc) won't happen with a piece of software that can't tell the kid WHY it's not the best idea to look at those things,

Re:Parenting much? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44742705)

So the modern version involves bolting their iphones to the table in the living room too?

Re:Parenting much? (1)

xt (225814) | about a year ago | (#44744261)

A sci-fi writer did write a short story about teddy bear robo-nannies shaping up future adults, back in 1965. Take a look at Harry Harrison's I always do what teddy says.

Sadly this could sell (5, Insightful)

onyxruby (118189) | about a year ago | (#44741225)

Too many parents refuse to parent and let the media do their work for them. For those parents that have raised snowflakes this would be the perfect passive aggressive way to handle things.

Sorry snowflake, the phone says you can't send text messages at dinner time, don't be upset with me!

Re:Sadly this could sell (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44741453)

yeah, god forbid parents get to use technology to make their lives easier too.

Re:Sadly this could sell (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44741525)

Too many parents refuse to parent and let the media do their work for them. For those parents that have raised snowflakes this would be the perfect passive aggressive way to handle things. Sorry snowflake, the phone says you can't send text messages at dinner time, don't be upset with me!

And you know this because talk radio told you, because that's were I keep hearing this tired meme.

Re:Sadly this could sell (1)

LandDolphin (1202876) | about a year ago | (#44742053)

I Don't think this is insightful. Utilizing parental controls is not letting "the media" do their work for them. It is giving parents an option of tools so that they can effectively do their work. Technology is suppose to make our lives easier, no? So why should technology not make different aspects of parenting easier too?

Good plan... (4, Insightful)

Genda (560240) | about a year ago | (#44741233)

Am I being overly concerned about building an access channel into the phone designed to yield aspects of phone control to another party. I can't imagine that hackers and cracker worldwide wouldn't hit this new feature like a schist-storm looking to use it as a pry tool to access control of people's Win-Phones. I guess MS is safe as long as the number of users is too small to justify the interest of the hackers.

Re:Good plan... (1)

hobarrera (2008506) | about a year ago | (#44741447)

Indeed. What happens when mum's phone get stolen?

Re:Good plan... (1)

canadiannomad (1745008) | about a year ago | (#44743841)

Indeed. What happens when mum's phone get stolen?

Factory reset.... Same as the kids will do.

Re:Good plan... (1)

hobarrera (2008506) | about a year ago | (#44747179)

So they could have just done that BEFORE mum lost her phone.

Re:Good plan... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44751063)

They would probably have some kind of heartbeat, or a "phone policy hasn't updated in over 24 hours!" notice. In which case the parents know to investigate.

Wrong target audience (2)

Gibgezr (2025238) | about a year ago | (#44741239)

As a parent, I have no need of this.
As a teacher, this would be useful.

Re:Wrong target audience (1)

LandDolphin (1202876) | about a year ago | (#44742061)

Its an easy way for parents to ensure that their student isn't using their phones during class. Something a parent should care about.

Re:Wrong target audience (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44743801)

I think a very easy method already exists: the phone account statement. Mine comes with CDR's of all the calls made or received on the phones on my account and when they occurred and for how long. A cursory glance is all it should really take.

Re:Wrong target audience (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44751087)

Does that include text messages and data usage? I mean seriously who uses talk time anymore?

This reminds me of (1)

coastin (780654) | about a year ago | (#44741253)

a recent Apple patent request for something like this for law enforcement to have the ability to shut down cell phone functions in an area. I guess saying it is to protect children makes it look a bit less Orwellian than saying it is for law enforcement.

Re:This reminds me of (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44741523)

Shutting down cell phone functions in an area... I'm pretty sure AT&T can claim prior art for this.

So just factory reset... (1)

Knuckx (1127339) | about a year ago | (#44741259)

So just factory reset via bootloader download mode which will remove all attached accounts and wipe the phone. Go reinstall all your stuff...

This is about as useful at preventing use of a device as setting a phone lock PIN/pattern/password. A better way of doing this would be to have the network operator disable outgoing calls/data/SMS/MMS during certain times, as another SIM would be needed (on GSM) or a carrier reprogram (on SIM-less CDMA). Of course this would not stop use of local applications or WiFi/Bluetooth data.

Re:So just factory reset... (1)

LandDolphin (1202876) | about a year ago | (#44741533)

For as much as people claim that younger generations are "tech savvy", there are not. Yeah, they under stand how to "use" computers and tech devices. But a vast majority don't understand how to control tech devices. It's like driving a car. Most everyone knows how to. But don't understand the slightest about what goes on under the hood. For a handful of actually tech savvy people, they will find a work around. For the majority, they will either find a tech savvy friend or be SOL.

Re:So just factory reset... (1)

Aranykai (1053846) | about a year ago | (#44742011)

Bullshit. I was 15 when XP hit the market and my Father decided he would give us(me and my sisters) all accounts, but only his would be administrator. Well, it didn't take us long to figure out we could just create a password reset floppy and get into his account any time we wanted.

As well, we had MSN dialup then, and we weren't allowed to get online without permission. Again, didn't take long to realize we could just hit 'forgot password' at the login screen and it would dialup a connection so you could do the recovery process. Just minimize the window, then use your instant messenger/browser of choice without ever needing his account.

Kids find a way. You don't need to know what goes on under the hood, it will be circumvented.

Re:So just factory reset... (1)

LandDolphin (1202876) | about a year ago | (#44742075)

Yeah, and you're on slashdot. I'm willing to bet that you are not the "Average person". OR do you claim to not no more about how computers/tech works then the average teenager?

Re:So just factory reset... (2)

canadiannomad (1745008) | about a year ago | (#44743865)

Yeah, and you're on slashdot. I'm willing to bet that you are not the "Average person". OR do you claim to not no more about how computers/tech works then the average teenager?

I think it depends on whether or not your teenager discovers that google knows the answers to their problems...
Google search "bypass smartphone lock"
and they don't need to be tech savvy to realize it is possible and find a video that walks them through it, or get a friend to help.

Re:So just factory reset... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44751127)

And then the app , web site, or program that controls the phone policy will simply notify the parents that the phone hasn't checked in for a policy update in 24 hours. Parents can deal with the circumvention as they please (taking away the phone or whatever).

Problem solved.

And... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44741301)

It's one step closer to police disabling of mobile devices. We really need to start using more open source operating systems on our phones. Hopefully the Ubuntu phone or something like it will take off.

Patents are beyond absurd... (3, Interesting)

Assmasher (456699) | about a year ago | (#44741365)

...and this isn't an anti-Microsoft rant as all public companies and most private ones are guilty of this as well.

Step 1: Take common ingredients used in hundreds if not thousands of other applications and/or software
Step 2: Mix them together in a way that is any more innovative than any new software package is by the mere fact of being new
Step 3: Patent it

WTF?

Why can't restaurants patent mixing ingredients together then? It's the same crap, lol...

Chef - "Oh, I added a cherry on top of the Bananas Foster - surely that's patent worthy, right?"
Patent Lawyer - "Oh, HELL YES, and I'm not just saying that because my entire livelihood and those of my useless brethren is riding on the answer... Go meshugah..."

Re:Patents are beyond absurd... (3, Interesting)

Darinbob (1142669) | about a year ago | (#44741483)

They're only "seeking" this patent. Sure, it might be granted eventually but that's when the complaints should start.

The problem is with corporations treating patenting of basic features as a primary buisness goal. There's basically an ongoing patent war amongst all the companies of a certain size. Basically you need to acquire a certain amount of patents, keep acquiring more, then deal with your competitors to exchange patents in exchange for no lawsuits while ganging up on smaller companies attempting to enter the space. Ultimately the validity of patents is of little use in the war because the goal is to make it too expensive to litigate rather than to innovate.

Also, everyone should learn to read patents and patent applications. These are very often misinterpreted. I'm sure there's nothing whatsoever here that is patenting "quieting mobile devices" but is instead patenting a specific way of doing this. The boilerplate of supporting claims are not the main claims of patents.

Re:Patents are beyond absurd... (1)

Assmasher (456699) | about a year ago | (#44741623)

One of the worst things are the patent lawyers themselves - I've dealt with patent lawyers in several sizes of organizations: SIEMENS, Microsoft, a 50 person company, and a 12 person company.

They were all idiots except for the ones from Microsoft, and they (the Microsoftie ones) were intentionally blase about the process. When I would explain to them that they were misinterpreted what I did they would just say "it doesn't really matter, it's provisional, we can straighten it out later, yadda^3..."

The SIEMENS guys were idiots, who didn't understand, quite literally, anything about software.

The ones at the 50 person sized company were attached legal counsel but external so they always wanted to patent everything out of sheer greed to accumulate billing hours. It was fun spending hours and hours in meetings with them coming up with stupid f***ing diagrams that were just incorrect enough to allow them to be misinterpreted in a court of law to cover claims that weren't actually appropriate.

The small company lawyers were a mixture of greedy and well meaning but incompetent (they were generalist patent attorneys.)

Re:Patents are beyond absurd... (1)

Imagix (695350) | about a year ago | (#44741711)

They're only "seeking" this patent. Sure, it might be granted eventually but that's when the complaints should start.

I disagree. The complaints should start now. This is not a company attempting to protect vast R&D investment into some innovative thing. This is a company attempting to build more patents to use in a patent war. They are attempting to game the system. I get _why_ they're attempting to game the system, but it's still wrong.

Re:Patents are beyond absurd... (1)

TechNeilogy (2948399) | about a year ago | (#44745465)

It's gotten to the point where not only are patents being sought and awarded even where ideas are obvious to a person skilled in the discipline; patents are being sought and awared even when they are obvious to a "man on the street" who spends more than three seconds thinking about a problem.

Re:Patents are beyond absurd... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44747509)

The patent system has been known to be broken for over 20 years. Read the 1991 position paper from the League for Programming Freedom if you want an in depth look at the issues from a software perspective.

From a more general perspective, there are very serious ethical conflicts of interest inherent in the system (a point that has been discussed endless times here, so there's little reason to go into it again). The legal professionals working in the area of patent law have conflicts of interest. The patent office has conflicts of interest. The judges, as they've been knowingly supporting this broken system for decades, have conflicts of interest. The Congress has conflicts of interest with respect to supporting this system, above and beyond the issue of most legislators being lawyers (not to mention all the lawyers in staff positions).

In short, any legal professional participating in this system is knowingly and will-fully choosing to participate in an area of law where it is very apparent to any rational observer that the legal profession -- as a class in society -- has chosen to ignore the whole ethical conflict of interest issue. Further, these legal professionals are making substantial amounts of money as a result of this choice, vastly more money than the majority of people in society. Crime may or may not pay, but it appears ignoring awkward ethics issues pays quite well.

Society has a fundamental right to ethical practice of law and to ethical government. Even the appearance of conflict of interest must be avoided whenever possible. In the USA, this right can reasonably be asserted as one of the rights arising under the 9tn Amendment "rights retained by the people", and the 10th Amendment "rights reserved to the people".

To be in compliance with their oaths to uphold the Bill of Rights, the legal profession should be putting a stop to all patent actions until the conflicts of interest and the other problems with the patent system have been resolved in a manner acceptable to society (and not just resolved in a manner acceptable to their profession). That clearly isn't happening.

Perhaps its time to just remove all of these legal professionals who are choosing to ignore their ethical obligations from the profession. We may or may not need a patent system. But if we, as a society, choose to allow one, it doesn't have to be one staffed with the current people.

Re:Patents are beyond absurd... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44780983)

This is totally absurd. I don't think it will go far. Trey @ Webapp Web Design Services [webappcreative.com.au]

Not new? (4, Insightful)

Frosty Piss (770223) | about a year ago | (#44741383)

But how can this be patentable?

The idea of having an Administrator set group policy, and being able to monitor both that policy and the use of devices on the network is nothing new.

Re:Not new? (2)

LandDolphin (1202876) | about a year ago | (#44741543)

Ahh but they added "on a mobile device". It's the newest version of "on the internet".

Re:Not new? (1)

hobarrera (2008506) | about a year ago | (#44741551)

But this is:
"The idea of having an Administrator set group policy, and being able to monitor both that policy and the use of mobile devices on the network is nothing new."

Can't you see the difference!?

Re:Not new? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44741791)

But there is a fact that makes this a true innovation : that is "on a crappy mobile device that nobody bought"

Exactly... an obvious extension (1)

theshowmecanuck (703852) | about a year ago | (#44742353)

I thought obvious extension of existing technology is not patentable. If you can remotely administer PC's or other computer equipment, smart phones are no different. They are just remote computers. I hope someone can challenge this patent on a basis at least something like this.

Re:Not new? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44742833)

Not to mention, does the patent actually include information about how this is going to be technically achieved? Hardware, software, a combination of both? I don't think Marconi patented 'A method to send messages long distances over the air' without having to say how it actually worked.

Re:Not new? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44743885)

'A method to send messages long distances over the air on a mobile device'

There, a new patent!

Re:Not new? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44742985)

Sounds like AT&T's Smart Limits product would be at least partly "prior art"...

How To: Jailbreak (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44741485)

Sweet, this sounds like a great method to teach your kids how to jailbreak their phones!
Oh wait, this is going to be Windows Phone only? In that case... Who the fuck cares?

I have to spend how much to disable features?! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44741601)

Seriously, why buy your kid a smart phone at all? Last time I checked you can still text and call on a prepaid flip phone.

Airwatch anyone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44741649)

So,... they want to patent what companies such as Airwatch, Blackberry and Mobileiron are already doing through their various products?

What a fail!

Quieting Mobile Devices? (1)

PPH (736903) | about a year ago | (#44742155)

Microsoft is patenting a hammer?

Microsoft Kin (1)

Ukab the Great (87152) | about a year ago | (#44742217)

Was the quietest mobile device in history. I've never heard one being used.

Prior Art Exists (tm) (c) (marca registrada) (1)

swschrad (312009) | about a year ago | (#44742503)

Kindles already have a time-limit feature for the kiddie accounts.

Re:Prior Art Exists (tm) (c) (marca registrada) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44744493)

Kindles already have a time-limit feature for the kiddie accounts.

That's good, don't want them reading too much.

hmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44743465)

how very momon of them...

Might as well (1)

Kazoo the Clown (644526) | about a year ago | (#44744525)

Might as well get them trained to submit to totalitarian regimes early.
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