General Motors Patent Grants

Call center based zoned microphone control in a vehicle

Granted: January 17, 2017
Patent Number: 9549061
A method and system for providing call center emergency services to one or more occupants of a vehicle having a plurality of listening zones within a passenger compartment of the vehicle. The method involves detecting a potential emergency condition, sending an emergency notification to a call center, receiving a listening zone control signal identifying at least one of a plurality of listening zones in the vehicle, and supplying audio received from the identified listening zones(s) to…

Remote communication device call origination using a data channel communication path

Granted: January 3, 2017
Patent Number: 9538338
A system and method for carrying out communications with a remote communication device (RCD) utilizes a data channel communication path to provide a call request from the RCD to a telematics services provider (TSP). In response to the call request, the TSP obtains a temporary phone number and sends it back to the RCD which then places a voice call to the TSP using the phone number. The received call is connected to an advisor to handle voice communication with the caller using the RCD.…

Virtual charge for electric vehicles

Granted: December 27, 2016
Patent Number: 9527398
The described method and system provides for dynamic adjustment of the lower charge threshold of an electrically-powered vehicle to allow a vehicle low on battery charge to continue to be operated. The vehicle's telematics unit monitors the charge level via the vehicle bus or other vehicle resources to determine if the vehicle is running low on electric charge. If the telematics unit determines that the charge level is approaching, meets or falls below the lower threshold, the telematics…

System and method for preparing vehicle for remote reflash event

Granted: December 27, 2016
Patent Number: 9529584
Implementations of the present disclosure contemplate utilizing the communicative connections between a telematics service provider (TSP) and a telematics unit in a vehicle to schedule a remote reflash event, issue instructions to the vehicle to prepare for the remote reflash event, and to administer the remote reflash event. A TSP may determine that the vehicle is presently running software for which an update is desirable. Thereafter, the TSP may transmit instructions to the vehicle to…

Controlling VoLTE service at vehicle telematics units

Granted: December 27, 2016
Patent Number: 9532305
A system and method of controlling a VoLTE-capable vehicle telematics unit includes: detecting the location of the vehicle telematics unit; determining that one or more cell towers within a range of the location have begun supporting a modern cellular protocol in addition to one or more other cell towers supporting an earlier cellular protocol; and wirelessly transmitting an over-the-air (OTA) message to the vehicle telematics unit commanding the vehicle telematics unit to detach from an…

Algorithm to remediate lost lifetime fuel economy cached data upon hardware swap

Granted: December 20, 2016
Patent Number: 9522641
A method is provided for determining a vehicle lifetime fuel economy using a remote server. The method includes retrieving from at least one vehicle control module vehicle data including an amount of total fuel used by the vehicle, determining whether the total fuel used by the vehicle is greater than or equal to a stored fuel used value, calculating an adjusted total fuel used if the total fuel used is not greater than or equal to the stored fuel used value, and calculating the lifetime…

Smartphone dock reminder for vehicles

Granted: December 13, 2016
Patent Number: 9519610
A system and method for reminding a user to dock a mobile device in a docking apparatus within a vehicle are provided. A docking apparatus includes: one or more sensors for determining whether an object is present in the docking apparatus; and at least one of speakers, a vibration mechanism, and one or more display indicators for reminding a user to place the mobile device in the docking apparatus when the one or more sensors determine that an object is not present in the docking…

Occupant recognition and verification system

Granted: December 6, 2016
Patent Number: 9511683
A method and system for recognizing and verifying the identity of a driver and front seat passenger of a vehicle. A vehicle owner uploads profile data for several individuals who may be a driver or passenger to a database in the vehicle. When a driver or passenger enters the vehicle, the system uses the profile data—which can include height, weight, and gender information about the individual—along with vehicle data such as seat position, to identify the driver or passenger from the…

Remote communication device call origination using a data channel communication path

Granted: November 29, 2016
Patent Number: 9510158
A system and method for carrying out communications with a remote communication device (RCD) utilizes a data channel communication path to provide a call request from the RCD to a telematics services provider (TSP). In response to the call request, the TSP obtains a temporary phone number and sends it back to the RCD which then places a voice call to the TSP using the phone number. The received call is connected to an advisor to handle voice communication with the caller using the RCD.…

Communicating with residential electrical devices via a vehicle telematics unit

Granted: November 15, 2016
Patent Number: 9495866
A method of communicating with residential electrical devices using a vehicle telematics unit includes receiving information identifying a residential electrical device to control; displaying in a vehicle one or more controlled features of the identified residential electrical device; receiving from a vehicle occupant a selection of the displayed controlled features of the residential electrical device; sending an instruction from the vehicle telematics unit to the residential electrical…

Automated message enumerated notification

Granted: November 15, 2016
Patent Number: 9497643
The described method and system provide a connectivity problem resolution mechanism that uses a data mode call in order to diagnose a connection problem while avoiding audible ringing and or inadvertent user pick-up during error diagnosis and correction. The system includes three primary functions and elements including cellular error message recognition, error response handling configured to update and/or maintain processes, and new error message capture. This system is usable both…

Method and system for alerting a driver to a condition of a vehicle

Granted: November 8, 2016
Patent Number: 9489778
A system for alerting a driver to a condition of a vehicle is disclosed herein. The system includes, but is not limited to, a telematics unit that is mounted to the vehicle and that is configured to receive a fault notification from a subsystem on board the vehicle when a fault in the subsystem is detected. A call center is remotely located from the vehicle and is communicatively connected to the telematics unit. The telematics unit is configured to provide the fault notification to the…

Using pitch during speech recognition post-processing to improve recognition accuracy

Granted: November 1, 2016
Patent Number: 9484027
A method of automated speech recognition in a vehicle. The method includes receiving audio in the vehicle, pre-processing the received audio to generate acoustic feature vectors, decoding the generated acoustic feature vectors to produce at least one speech hypothesis, and post-processing the at least one speech hypothesis using pitch to improve speech recognition accuracy. The speech hypothesis can be accepted as recognized speech during post-processing if pitch is present in the…

Method of determining an attribute of a parking structure

Granted: October 25, 2016
Patent Number: 9478134
A method of determining an attribute of a parking structure includes monitoring vehicle status data (VSD) obtained by a first on-board processor operatively associated with a vehicle telematics unit. The first processor executes computer readable code encoded on a first non-transitory computer readable medium. The method includes recording, in a vehicle memory operatively associated with the first processor, the VSD based on an output of a vehicle on-board sensor. The method further…

Controlling vocoder selection at a wireless device

Granted: October 25, 2016
Patent Number: 9479971
A method of controlling a vocoder selection of a wireless device that uses cellular protocols includes wirelessly receiving an instruction at the wireless device from a wireless carrier system, wherein the instruction includes a vocoder identity that is associated with a particular cellular protocol; identifying a vocoder currently in use at the wireless device; and changing the vocoder currently in use at the wireless device if the identified vocoder is different than the vocoder…

Location-controlled Wi-Fi module

Granted: October 25, 2016
Patent Number: 9480066
A system and method of controlling Wi-Fi module operation based on vehicle location includes: detecting at a vehicle a geopolitical identifier broadcast by a wireless carrier system; determining whether operational settings of the Wi-Fi module conform to operational settings specified for the detected geopolitical identifier; and changing the operational settings of the Wi-Fi module when not conforming to the operational settings specified for the detected geopolitical identifier.

Automatically controlling the loudness of voice prompts

Granted: October 18, 2016
Patent Number: 9473094
A system and method of regulating automatic speech recognition (ASR) playback of audible prompts includes: generating an audible prompt via a speaker; detecting ambient sound during the audible prompt via a microphone; obtaining a speech recognition confidence value for speech recognition performed on the ambient sound; and reducing a volume level of the audible prompt based on the speech recognition confidence value while continuing to generate the audible prompt.

Interactive access to vehicle information

Granted: October 11, 2016
Patent Number: 9466158
Implementations of the present invention contemplate utilizing the communicative connections between a telematics service provider (TSP), a communication device, and a telematics unit in a vehicle to interactively provide information pertaining to various components of a vehicle. Implementations contemplate that an image capture device is communicatively connected to the telematics unit in a vehicle and an operations control center of the TSP. Image data pertaining to an image captured…

Method and apparatus for sensor synthesis and arbitration between mobile devices and vehicles

Granted: October 4, 2016
Patent Number: 9462319
A system and method for using data that is external to a vehicle in vehicular applications. The system and method include determining data that is external to the vehicle is available for use, comparing the external data to data that is available from a vehicle system, and determining whether the external data has a higher utility function compared to data that is available from a vehicle system. The system and method further include using the external data to enhance a vehicular…

First-responder notification for alternative fuel vehicles

Granted: September 20, 2016
Patent Number: 9449494
A method for notifying parties in close proximity to a vehicle of a potential vehicle hazard includes detecting that the vehicle has been in a collision, determining the type of propulsion system used by the vehicle, generating a warning or other notification relating to the propulsion system, and communicating the notification to a party located within a predetermined range of the vehicle. Communication of the notification can be carried out by renaming the telematics unit with a device…