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Multiple screen mode in mobile terminal

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Multiple screen mode in mobile terminal


Provided are a method and a mobile terminal for simultaneously displaying at least two application windows on a display unit of a mobile terminal. The method may include displaying a first application window associated with a first application on an entire display area of the display unit, receiving a multi_screen mode initiation input from a user, dividing a display area of the display unit into at least two display areas including a first display area and a second display area in response to the multi_screen mode initiation input, and displaying the first application window and a second application window on the at least two display areas, respectively, in a multi_screen mode.

Browse recent Kt Corporation, Kt Tech Inc. patents - ,
Inventors: Haeng-Suk CHAE, Kyoung-Tae CHOI
USPTO Applicaton #: #20120290966 - Class: 715778 (USPTO) - 11/15/12 - Class 715 
Data Processing: Presentation Processing Of Document, Operator Interface Processing, And Screen Saver Display Processing > Operator Interface (e.g., Graphical User Interface) >On-screen Workspace Or Object >Multiple Virtual Screen Or Desktop Switching



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The Patent Description & Claims data below is from USPTO Patent Application 20120290966, Multiple screen mode in mobile terminal.

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CROSS REFERENCE TO PRIOR APPLICATIONS

The present application claims priority under 35 U.S.C. §119 to Korean Patent Application No. 10-2011-0043882 (filed on May 11, 2011), which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a mobile terminal and, in particular, to displaying at least two application windows on a display unit of a mobile terminal.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Various types of mobile terminals have been introduced. Most mobile terminals are equipped with a multi-touch sensing display unit. For example, a smart phone equipped with a multi-touch sensing display unit has become popular. The smart phone provides many convenient features to a user. A user may perform daily tasks using the smart phone instead of using other computing devices including a computer, a fax, and a phone.

Such a typical smart phone may display a graphic user interface to interact with a user and allow a user to perform multiple tasks simultaneously. Such a typical mobile terminal may, however, display one application window at a time although multiple applications are in operation as a background mode. For example, a typical mobile terminal may display only one application window associated with one that a user most recently activates among applications in operation. When a user wants to display another application window associated with another application running in a background mode, a user may be required to close a current application window and initiate another desired application to display an associated application window on a display unit. Such a manner of displaying application windows by opening and closing windows might be inconvenient to a user of the mobile terminal.

SUMMARY

OF THE INVENTION

This summery is provided to introduce a selection of concepts in a selection of concepts in a simplified from that are further described below in the detailed description with reference to the drawings. This summery is not intended to identify key features or essential features of the claimed subject matter, nor is it intended to limit the scope of the claimed subject matter.

Embodiments of the present invention overcome the above disadvantages and other disadvantages not described above. Also, the present invention is not required to overcome the disadvantages described above, and an embodiment of the present invention may not overcome any of the problems described above.

In accordance with an aspect of the present invention, at least two application windows may be displayed on a display unit of a mobile terminal.

In accordance with another aspect of the present invention, a display area of a mobile terminal may be divided into at least two display areas in response to a multi_screen mode initiation input and application windows may be displayed in the at least two display areas simultaneously.

In accordance with another aspect of the present invention, a pinch input may initiate a dual_screen mode in a mobile terminal.

In accordance with an embodiment of the present invention, a method may be provided for simultaneously displaying at least two application windows on a display unit of a mobile terminal. The method may include displaying a first application window associated with a first application on an entire display area of the display unit, receiving a multi_screen mode initiation input from a user, dividing a display area of the display unit into at least two display areas including a first display area and a second display area in response to the multi_screen mode initiation input, and displaying the first application window and a second application window on the at least two display areas, respectively, in a multi_screen mode.

The receiving a multi_screen mode initiation input may include receiving an input from the user, determining whether the received input is made through at least one of a predetermined key button and a predetermined icon, which are designated for initiating the multi_screen mode, initiating the multi_screen mode when the received input is made through the at least one of the predetermined key button and the predetermined icon, otherwise, performing an operation associated the received input. The predetermined key button may be one of key buttons disposed on the mobile terminal and the predetermined icon may be one of a group of icons included in an initial graphic user interface displayed on the display unit of the mobile terminal.

The receiving a multi_screen mode initiation input may include receiving an input from the user, determining whether the received input is a pinch input, determining whether an associated pinching motion of the pinch input exceeds a range of shrinking an application window when the received input is the pinch input, initiating the multi_screen mode when the pinching motion exceeds the range of shrinking the first application window, otherwise, shrinking the first application window corresponding to the pinching motion of the pinch input.

The receiving a multi_screen mode initiation input may include receiving an input from the user, determining whether the received input is a spread input, determining whether an associated spreading motion of the spread input exceeds a range of expanding an application window when the received input is the spread input, initiating the multi_screen mode when the spreading motion exceeds the range of expanding the application window, otherwise, expanding the first application window corresponding to the expanding motion of the spread input.

The dividing a display area of the display unit may include dividing the display area vertically into a left side display area as the first display area and a right side display area as the second display area when the multi_screen mode is initialed.

The dividing a display area of the display unit may include dividing the display area horizontally into an upper side display area as the first display area and a lower side display area as the second display area when the multi_screen mode is initiated.

The displaying the first application window and the second application window may include reconfiguring the first application window corresponding to the first display area and displaying the first application window on the first display area, activating a second application previously selected by at least one of the user, a service provider, and a manufacturer of the mobile terminal, and displaying the second application window associated with the second application on the second display area.

After the displaying the first application window and a second application window, the method may include receiving a single_screen mode initiation input, closing one of the first application window and the second application window in response to, and associated with, the single_screen mode initiation input, and displaying the other one of the first application window and the second application window on an entire display area of the display unit in a single_screen mode.

The receiving a single_screen mode may include receiving an input from the user, determining whether the received input is through at least one of a predetermined key button and a predetermined icon corresponding to the single_screen mode, initiating the single_screen mode when the received input is the single_screen mode initiation input, otherwise, performing an operation associated with the received input. The predetermined key button may be one of key buttons disposed on the mobile terminal and the predetermined icon may be one of a group of icons included in an initial graphic user interface displayed on the display unit of the mobile terminal.

The receiving a single_screen mode may include receiving an input from the user, determining whether the received input is a request for closing one of the first application window and the second application window, initiating the single_screen mode when the received input is the request for closing one of the first application window and the second application window, otherwise, performing an operation associated with the received input.

The receiving a single_screen mode initiation input may includes receiving an input from the user, determining whether the received input is a pinch input, determining whether pinching motion of the pinch input exceeds a range of shrinking an application window when the received input is the pinch input, initiating the multi_screen mode when the pinching motion exceeds the range of shrinking an application window, and shrinking one, associated with the received input, of the first application window and the second application corresponding to the pinching motion of the pinch input.

The receiving a single_screen mode initiation input may include receiving an input from the user, determining whether the received input is a spread input, determining whether spreading motion of the spread input exceeds an allowable range of expanding an application window when the received input is the spread input, initiating the single_screen mode when the spreading motion exceeds the allowable range of expanding an application window, and expanding one, associated with the received input, of the first application window and the second application window corresponding to the expanding motion of the spread input.

In accordance with another embodiment of the present invention, a method may be provided for simultaneously displaying two application windows on a display unit of a mobile terminal. The method may include displaying a first application window associated with a first application on an entire display area of the display unit when activating the first application, receiving a dual_screen mode initiation input from a user, dividing a display area of the display unit into a first display area and a second display area in response to the dual_screen mode, and displaying the first application window on the first display area and a second application window on the second display area in the dual_screen mode.

The receiving a dual_screen mode initiation input may include receiving an input from the user, determining whether the received input is a pinch input, determining whether an associated pinching motion of the pinch input exceeds a range of shrinking an application window when the received input is the pinch input, initiating the dual_screen mode when the pinching motion exceeds the range of shrinking an application window, otherwise, shrinking the first application window corresponding to the pinching motion of the pinch input.

The displaying the first application window and a second application window may include reconfiguring the first application window corresponding to the first display area and displaying the first application window on the first display area, activating a second application previously selected by at least one of the user, a service provider, and a manufacturer of the mobile terminal, and displaying the second application window associated with the second application on the second display area.

After the displaying the first application window and a second application window, the method may include receiving a single_screen mode initiation input, closing one, associated with the single_screen mode initiation input, of the first application window and the second application window, and displaying the other one of the first application window and the second application window on an entire display area of the display unit of the mobile terminal in response to the single_screen mode.

The receiving a single_screen mode may include receiving an input from the user, determining whether the received input is a pinch input, determining whether an associated pinching motion of the pinch input exceeds a range of shrinking an application window when the received input is the pinch input, initiating the single_screen mode when the pinching motion exceeds the range of shrinking an application window, and shrinking one, associated with the received input, of the first application window and the second application corresponding to the pinching motion of the pinch input.

In accordance with another embodiment of the present invention, a mobile terminal may include a display unit, a touch input processor, and a controller. The display unit may be configured to sense a touch input made on a surface thereof, to determine coordinate values of the sensed touch input at a given interval, to display an application window on an entire display area in a single_screen mode, and to display at least two application windows separately on divided display areas in a multi_screen mode. The touch input processor may be configured to receive the coordinate value from the display unit and to determine whether the sensed touch input is a multi_screen mode initiation input or a single_screen mode initiation input based on the received coordinate values of the touch input. The controller may be configured to initiate at least one of a multi_screen mode and a single_screen mode based on the determination result of the touch input processor.

The touch input processor may determine whether the sensed touch input is at least one of a predetermined icon, a closing request, a pinch input, and a spread input based on the received coordinate values of the sensed touch input. In case that the sensed touch input is the predetermined icon, the touch input processor may determine that the sensed touch input is at least one of the multi_screen mode initiation input and the single_screen mode initiation input when the predetermined icon is associated with initiation of one of the multi_screen mode initiation input and the single_screen mode initiation input. In case that the sensed touch input is the closing request, the touch input processor may determine that the sensed touch input is the single_screen mode initiation input. In case that the sensed touch input is the pinch input, the touch input processor may determine that the pinch input is at least one of the multi_screen mode initiation input and the single_screen mode initiation input when pinching motion of the pinch input exceeds a range of shrinking an application window. In case that the sensed touch input is the spread input, the touch input processor may determine that the spread input is at least one of the multi_screen mode initiation input and the single_screen mode initiation input when spreading motion of the spread input exceeds a range of expanding an application window.

When the touch input is the multi_screen mode initiation input based on the determination result of the touch input processor, the controller may divide a display area of the display unit into at least two display areas including a first display area and a second display area, activate a second application previously selected by one of a user and a manufacturer of the mobile terminal, reconfigure a first application window corresponding to the first display area, display the reconfigured first application window on the first display area, and display a second application window associated with the second application on the second display area, wherein the first application window is an application window previously displayed on an entire display area of the display unit.

When the touch input is the single_screen mode initiation input based on the determination result of the touch input processor, the controller may close one, associated with the single_screen mode initiation input, of the first application window and the second application window, and display the other one of the first application window and the second application window on the entire display area of the display unit.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The above and/or other aspects of the present invention will become apparent and more readily appreciated from the following description of embodiments, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, of which:

FIG. 1 shows a mobile terminal operating in a multi_screen mode in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 2 shows a display area of a display unit, divided into two display areas in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 3 shows gesture inputs for initiating a multi_screen mode in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 4 shows a mobile terminal for simultaneously displaying at least two application windows in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 5 shows a method for simultaneously displaying at least two application windows on a display unit of a mobile terminal in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 6 shows a method for transiting from a multi_screen mode to a single_screen mode in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 7 shows a method for displaying two application windows on a display unit of a mobile terminal in a dual_screen mode in response to a pinch input in accordance with another embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 8 shows a method for returning back to a single_screen mode from a dual_screen mode in response to a pinch input in accordance with another embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 9 shows a mobile terminal displaying two application windows in a dual_screen mode in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention; and

FIG. 10 shows a mobile terminal displaying two application windows in a dual_screen mode in accordance with another embodiment of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

OF THE INVENTION

Reference will now be made in detail to embodiments of the present invention, examples of which are illustrated in the accompanying drawings, wherein like reference numerals refer to like elements throughout. The embodiments are described below, in order to explain the present invention by referring to the figures.

In accordance with an embodiment of the present invention, a mobile terminal may display at least two application windows on a display unit at the same time in a multi_screen mode. Such a multi_screen mode may be initiated by a pinch input. Furthermore, the multi_screen mode may be returned back to a single_screen mode by a single_screen mode initiation input in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention. In response to the single_screen mode initiation input, one of application windows may be closed and the other application window may be displayed on entire display area of a display unit.

FIG. 1 shows a mobile terminal operating in a multi_screen mode in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

Referring to FIG. 1, mobile terminal 100 may include display unit 110 and key buttons 180 in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention. Display unit 110 may be a touch sensing display unit. Particularly, display unit 110 may be a multi_touch sensing display unit that is capable of recognizing multiple points of contact made on a surface of display unit 110. Mobile terminal 100 may simultaneously display at least two application windows on display unit 110 in a multi_screen mode as shown in FIG. 1. Such a multi_screen mode may be initiated in response to a certain input made by a related user in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention. The certain input may be referred to as a multi_screen mode initiation input. The multi_screen mode initiation input may be set up by a user or a system designer. For example, one of key buttons 180 may be designated as a multi_screen mode initiation input. One of icons 600 displayed within initial graphic user interface 500 may be designated as multi_screen mode initiation input. The initial graphic user interface may be produced by an operating system, such as an android operating system, of mobile terminal 100. Particularly, a gesture input made on display unit 110 may be designated as the multi_screen mode initiation input. For example, a pinch input and/or a spread input may be designated as the multi— screen mode initiation input. The pinch input and the spread input will described with reference to FIG. 3.

As shown in a diagram (A) of FIG. 1, mobile terminal 100 may display initial graphic user interface 500 on a display area of display unit 110 when mobile terminal 100 is activated. Initial graphic user interface 500 may be produced by an operating system of mobile terminal 100. For example, the operating system may be an android operating system, but the present invention is not limited thereto. Initial graphic user interface 500 may include a plurality of icons 600 associated with applications installed in mobile terminal 100. Applications may be downloaded from a related server or directly installed from an external device by a related user. Initial graphic user interface 500 may enable a related user to interact with desired applications. The related user may initiate desired applications by touching icons 600 associated with the desired applications. For example, the related user may activate a movie player application, as a first application, by making a touch input on corresponding icon 601. In this case, mobile terminal 100 may display first application window 200 associated with the first application on display unit 110, as shown in a diagram (B). As shown in the diagram (B), a movie is played back on display unit 110 as first application window 200.



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stats Patent Info
Application #
US 20120290966 A1
Publish Date
11/15/2012
Document #
13469267
File Date
05/11/2012
USPTO Class
715778
Other USPTO Classes
International Class
06F3/048
Drawings
11



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