Multi-Carrier Mobile Phone for Mission-Critical Service

A new mobile handset is proposed in this document. A proposed mobile handset is capable of maintaining its mobile connections to multiple mobile service carriers simultaneously, and it increases the overall reliability of the mobile service.

When all mobile service carriers’ services are operating normally, the handset uses a primary network to communicate. A subscriber of the handset is given a list of carriers as shown in Figure 2 and is able to choose the primary network.

When the service by the primary carrier becomes unreachable, the handset automatically switches to another mobile service carrier . Thanks to the automatic switch-over, the subscriber of the handset does not necessarily wait for the primary service carrier to restore their service.

Although the handset is subscribed to multiple carriers simultaneously, the handset is operated with a single phone number and a single IP address. Thus, the operation of the handset is transparent regardless of multiple service carriers the handset is connected to. “Virtual number” and “Call forwarding” make it possible to use a single number as in Figure 5, and “IPv6 multihoming” realizes the use of single IP address with multiple service carriers.

Implementation Strategies
Implementation of the proposed handset requires both hardware and software developments. For hardware, the design of the current mobile handset must be improved so that the handset can establish simultaneous multiple connections to multiple service carriers’ networks through different radio frequencies.

For software, a new mechanism for detecting the connection status for multiple connections must be built-in. The new mechanism also requires a switch-over capability to switch to an alternative connection in case of the failure of the primary connection automatically. In addition, a new user interface module for managing multiple service carriers must be developed. Sample UIs are given in Figure 2, Figure 3 and Figure 4.

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