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The invention pertains to improved methods and systems that facilitate data delivery to electronic devices. One aspect pertains to data delivery to electronic devices that are portable, such as, mobile devices. In one embodiment, one mobile device discovers another mobile device within its vicinity. The mobile devices can then wirelessly transmit data from one mobile device to the other. Typically, the mobile devices are associated with persons (users). The mobile devices, or their users, can control, request or influence the particular data content being delivered.
Here's Apple's background on the invention: "Portable electronic devices, such as mobile phones, MP3 players and Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs), are often used by individuals on a personal basis. In other words, it is not uncommon for a person to carry a portable electronic device with them throughout their day. Often, these portable electronic devices store media data for use by their user. In the case of MP3 players or PDAs, media data is typically downloaded from a host computer when the MP3 player or PDA is connected to the host computer by way of a cable (USB cable). In the event that a MP3 player or PDA supports wireless communication, it is possible that the downloading of media data to the MP3 player or PDA could be performed in a wireless manner. In the case of mobile phones, media data (such as songs or ring tones) are downloaded over the wireless communication network (i.e., cellular phone network).
"However, as portable electronic devices become more versatile and more interactive, it is advantageous to exchange (send and/or receive) media or other types of data with other electronic devices in a wireless manner."
The inventors are Stanley C. Ng, Andrew Bert Hodge, Anthony M. Fadell, Jeffrey L. Robbin, Robert Edward Borcherse, Chris Bell and Eddy Cue. FIG. 1 is a block diagram of a data exchange system according to one embodiment of the invention.