Title:
Method and System for Sharing Chance Games Related Informaiton
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present invention provides a system and a method enabling a multiplicity of users to share chance games' information such as winning tickets, prizes and the like. A software application operatively associated with a server, may allow the users to input information regarding tickets that have been purchased by users. The details may be presented by the application for users to view, for example, recently purchased tickets details. This may allow the users to estimate their chances in purchasing a winning chance game ticket according to the presented information. The tickets details may be inputted by the users, using their terminals, and transmitted to the server for further processing and storing of the data.



Inventors:
Rozen, Yuval (Kiryat-Uno, IL)
Application Number:
12/202230
Publication Date:
03/04/2010
Filing Date:
08/30/2008
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63F9/24
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
YOO, JASSON H
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
The, Law Office of Michael Kondoudis E. (888 16th Street, N.W., Suite 800, Washington, DC, 20006, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A method for sharing information relating to tickets of at least one chance game, using at least one server, said method comprising: inputting winning tickets' details, wherein users input the details of purchased winning tickets, using users' terminals; transmitting said details from said terminals to said server through at least one communication network; and presenting recently updated winning tickets' details, wherein said presentation allows a multiplicity of users to view and share winning tickets related information to allow said users to estimate their chances in purchasing a winning ticket according to said presented information.

2. The method of claim 1, wherein said chance game enables a multiplicity of users, to purchase a multiplicity of tickets where a predefined number of tickets comprise a predefined number of winning tickets, each winning ticket enables winning a predefined prize.

3. The method of claim 1, further comprising inputting non-winning tickets' details wherein users specify the result of the tickets and other details of the tickets.

4. The method of claim 3, wherein said inputting of the tickets' details is carried out by transmitting SMS messages with said details to said server, wherein said server enables receiving and processing said details and updating at least one database.

5. The method of claim 3, further comprising: processing said inputted details of the winning and non-winning tickets to calculate statistical parameters including a chance factor of the chances for purchasing a winning ticket according to accumulated information inputted by the users; and presenting said chance factor.

6. The method of claim 5, wherein each predefined number of tickets is associated with a predefined series of tickets, and wherein said processing is carried out in correspondence to each series.

7. The method of claim 5, further comprising ranking the users that have inputted tickets' related details according to credibility rates to allow processing the statistical parameters also according to the ranking associated with each user.

8. The system of claim 5, further comprising enabling external sources and users to feedback on the presented details and statistical parameters and presenting said feedbacks.

9. The method of claim 1, wherein the specified details of each winning ticket comprises at least one of: a date of purchase; a winning prize; and number of the ticket.

10. The method of claim 1, wherein said tickets are scratch-off lottery tickets of a lottery game allowing users to scratch off areas in the ticket to reveal an indication for the result of the ticket.

11. The method of claim 1, further comprising receiving tickets related information from a chance game's distributors center, which distributes said tickets, and processing said information by cross-checking said information with the input details to verify the credibility of the users' input.

12. A system enabling a multiplicity of users to share information relating to at least one chance game, wherein said chance game enables a multiplicity of users to purchase a multiplicity of tickets where a predefined number of tickets comprise a predefined number of winning tickets, said system comprising: a software application; at least one database; and at least one server, wherein said database is operatively associated with said application and server, and wherein said application enables users to input tickets related details including information regarding winning tickets, using users' terminals, transmitting said details to said server through at least one communication network, processing and presenting said information to allow the users to estimate their chances in purchasing a winning ticket according to said presented information.

13. The system of claim 12, wherein said server enables operating said application, retrieve and update data from said at least one database and communicating with a multiplicity of users through the users' terminals and said at least one communication network.

14. The system of claim 13, wherein said application is a web application and said server is a web server maintaining a website through which users, using their terminals input and view tickets' related details.

15. The system of claim 12, wherein said application comprises: a user interface; an update module; and an inquiry module, wherein said update module and inquiry module are operatively associated with said interface, and wherein said interface enables users to input tickets' related details according to predefined input options and to present updated accumulated tickets' details according to predefined presentation options.

16. The system of claim 15, wherein said update module enables transmitting, receiving and processing input tickets' details and updating said at least one database according to said input details.

17. The system of claim 15, wherein said interface further enables users to build a search query according to which said inquiry module searches through said at least one database to allow presenting tickets' related information according to said query.

18. The system of claim 12, wherein said application further comprises a statistical module enabling to calculate and present statistical parameters enabling to predict the chances of a user to purchase a winning ticket at a predefined timing-window, according to history of tickets related information stored in the system.

19. The system of claim 12, further comprising a credibility module enabling users to identify themselves when inputting tickets' related details and other users to rank the credibility of the inputting users' information, wherein said interface includes ranking tools to allow said ranking to be carried out.

20. The system of claim 12, wherein said application enables communicating with a distribution center, which distributes said tickets, receiving feedbacks relating to the tickets' details inputted by users and other ticket related information from said distribution center and processing said information by cross-checking said information with the input details to verify the credibility of the users' input.

21. The system of claim 12, wherein said tickets are scratch-off lottery tickets of a lottery chance game allowing users to scratch off predefined areas in the ticket having removable by scratching adhesive materials to reveal an indication for the result of the ticket.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates generally to the field of chance games and more particularly to a system and a method for allowing users to share information relating to chance games.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Many chance games played by a vast number of users such as scratch-off types of lottery games and other chance games based on predefined winning tickets out of a predefined number of game tickets.

Scratch-off chance games usually include scratch-off zones visually hiding information, where the user can scratch off these parts to reveal the information underneath the scratched off layer and find out whether he/she won or not.

The money the users pay for the tickets usually finances the winning prizes as well as revenues for the companies that issue these tickets.

The companies usually issue a predefined number of non-winning tickets (e.g. 100,000) for each predefined number of winning tickets (e.g. 5) where each winning ticket may be associated with a different winning prize. This mean that once all the predefined winning tickets have been purchased there is no chance for the other users to win any prize or more desirable prizes and that the purchasing of the ticket may be quite futile.

A patent application number WO03069567 discloses a lottery ticket gaming system in which at least one function of the game played on the lottery ticket is performed by obtaining information regarding the same by a communication device, which places the player in communication with the lottery sponsor. Once contact is made with through the server, the player is provided with information that tells the player whether the game, which is played, has produced a winning lottery ticket and the amount of any such prize.

This application retrieves information regarding the resulting prize and winning/non-winning condition of the ticket. This does not allow users or players that do not represent the lottery sponsors (the companies that issue and distribute the tickets) to share information regarding the resulting conditions and prizes of their bought tickets. As a result, this may lead to a conflict of interests since the lottery sponsors have an interest for the players to continue purchasing more tickets even when winning tickets have already been bought and very few if any winning tickets are left amongst the remaining on-sale tickets.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention, in some embodiments thereof, provides a system and a method enabling a multiplicity of user to share information relating to tickets of at least one chance game. The system may comprise a software application operated by at least one server and at least one database.

The chance game may enable a multiplicity of users to purchase a multiplicity of tickets, where a predefined number of tickets may comprise a predefined number of winning tickets, each winning ticket enables winning a predefined prize (e.g. monetary prize and/or any other prize such as products, vacations, flights and the like, as known in the art).

According to some embodiments of the invention, the chance game tickets may be scratch-off lottery tickets of a lottery game allowing users to scratch off areas in the ticket to reveal an indication for the result of the ticket.

According to some embodiments of the invention, the system may enable users to input winning tickets' details, wherein the users input the details of purchased tickets (e.g. winning/non-winning result of the ticket, date of purchasing, prize specifications and the like), using users' terminals (e.g. computers such as PCs, laptops, mobile phones and the like) and said application; transmitting said details from said terminals to said server through at least one communication network; and presenting recently updated winning tickets' details.

The presenting of the recently details of purchased tickets that were inputted and transmitted by users who bought those tickets allows a multiplicity of users to view and share tickets related information to allow said users to estimate their chances in purchasing a winning ticket according to said presented information.

According to some embodiments of the invention, the inputting of the tickets' details may be carried out by transmitting SMS messages with said details to, enables receiving, transmitting and processing said details.

According to some embodiments of the invention, the system may further enable processing said inputted details of the winning and non-winning tickets to calculate statistical parameters including a chance factor of the chances for purchasing a winning ticket according to accumulated information inputted by the users; and presenting said chance factor through the terminals of the users and the application.

According to some embodiments of the invention, each predefined number of tickets may be associated with a predefined series of tickets and the processing may be carried out in correspondence to each series.

According to some embodiments of the invention, the application may comprise a user interface, an update module and an inquiry module.

The interface may enable users to input tickets' related details according to predefined input options and to present updated accumulated tickets' details according to predefined presentation options.

The update module may enable users to input information, transmit data to the server and update the database regarding recently updated tickets related details.

The interface may further enable users to build a search query according to which said inquiry module may search through at least one database associated with the system, to allow presenting tickets' related information according to said query.

According to some embodiments of the invention, the application may further comprise a statistical module enabling to calculate and present statistical parameters (such as the chance factor) enabling to predict the chances of a user to purchase a winning ticket at a predefined timing-window, according to history of tickets related information stored in the system.

According to some embodiments of the invention, the application may further comprise a credibility module enabling users to identify themselves when inputting tickets' related details and other users to rank the credibility of the inputting users' information, wherein said interface includes ranking tools to allow said ranking to be carried out.

According to some embodiments of the invention, the application may further enable communicating with a distribution center, which distributes said tickets and receiving feedbacks relating to the tickets' details inputted by users and other ticket related information from said distribution center as well as processing said information by cross-checking said information with the input details to verify the credibility of the users' input.

The system may further enable external sources and users to feedback on the presented details and statistical parameters and presenting said feedbacks.

BRIEF DESCRIPTIONS OF THE DRAWINGS

The subject matter regarded as the invention will become more clearly understood in light of the ensuing description of embodiments herein, given by way of example and for purposes of illustrative discussion of the present invention only, with reference to the accompanying drawings, wherein:

FIG. 1 is block diagram schematically illustrating a system for sharing a chance game's tickets related information, according to some embodiments of the invention;

FIG. 2 is a flowchart schematically illustrating a method for inputting and updating a chance game's tickets related information, according to some embodiments of the invention; and

FIG. 3 is a flowchart schematically illustrating a method for retrieving of a chance game's tickets related information, according to some embodiments of the invention.

The drawings together with the description make apparent to those skilled in the art how the invention may be embodied in practice.

DETAILED DESCRIPTIONS OF SOME EMBODIMENTS OF THE INVENTION

The present invention, in some embodiments thereof, provides a system and a method enabling a multiplicity of users, to share chance games' information such as winning tickets and the like. A software application (e.g. a website and a web application) may allow the users to input and view information regarding winning tickets (e.g. the date of winning and the winning sum/prize). This may allow the users to estimate their chances in purchasing a winning chance game ticket 10 according to the presented information. Statistical chance parameters for purchasing a winning ticket at a predefined moment in time may be made and presented by the system, which may rely on an accumulated users' input information regarding resulting condition (winning/non-winning and the prize sum, for example) of tickets they have already purchased.

This means that the more users input their tickets' information the more the presented information may be reliable to estimate the chances of purchasing a winning ticket.

The chance games may be any chance games known in the art where a predefined number of game tickets comprise a predefined number of winning tickets where the predefined winning tickets indicate and enable predefined winning prizes. For example, the tickets may be scratch-off lottery tickets, where the user is required to scratch off areas of the ticket to reveal indicating symbols or text indicating whether or not the ticket has won any prize and if so indicating the prize, as known in the art.

While the description below contains many specifications, these should not be construed as limitations on the scope of the invention, but rather as exemplifications of the preferred embodiments. Those skilled in the art will envision other possible variations that are within its scope. Accordingly, the scope of the invention should be determined not by the embodiment illustrated, but by the appended claims and their legal equivalents.

An embodiment is an example or implementation of the inventions. The various appearances of “one embodiment,” “an embodiment” or “some embodiments” do not necessarily all refer to the same embodiments. Although various features of the invention may be described in the context of a single embodiment, the features may also be provided separately or in any suitable combination. Conversely, although the invention may be described herein in the context of separate embodiments for clarity, the invention may also be implemented in a single embodiment.

Reference in the specification to “one embodiment”, “an embodiment”, “some embodiments” or “other embodiments” means that a particular feature, structure, or characteristic described in connection with the embodiments is included in at least one embodiments, but not necessarily all embodiments, of the inventions. It is understood that the phraseology and terminology employed herein is not to be construed as limiting and are for descriptive purpose only.

The principles and uses of the teachings of the present invention may be better understood with reference to the accompanying description, figures and examples. It is to be understood that the details set forth herein do not construe a limitation to an application of the invention. Furthermore, it is to be understood that the invention can be carried out or practiced in various ways and that the invention can be implemented in embodiments other than the ones outlined in the description below.

It is to be understood that the terms “including”, “comprising”, “consisting” and grammatical variants thereof do not preclude the addition of one or more components, features, steps, or integers or groups thereof and that the terms are to be construed as specifying components, features, steps or integers. The phrase “consisting essentially of”, and grammatical variants thereof, when used herein is not to be construed as excluding additional components, steps, features, integers or groups thereof but rather that the additional features, integers, steps, components or groups thereof do not materially alter the basic and novel characteristics of the claimed composition, device or method.

If the specification or claims refer to “an additional” element, that does not preclude there being more than one of the additional element. It is to be understood that where the claims or specification refer to “a” or “an” element, such reference is not be construed that there is only one of that element. It is to be understood that where the specification states that a component, feature, structure, or characteristic “may”, “might”, “can” or “could” be included, that particular component, feature, structure, or characteristic is not required to be included.

Where applicable, although state diagrams, flow diagrams or both may be used to describe embodiments, the invention is not limited to those diagrams or to the corresponding descriptions. For example, flow need not move through each illustrated box or state, or in exactly the same order as illustrated and described.

Methods of the present invention may be implemented by performing or completing manually, automatically, or a combination thereof, selected steps or tasks. The term “method” refers to manners, means, techniques and procedures for accomplishing a given task including, but not limited to, those manners, means, techniques and procedures either known to, or readily developed from known manners, means, techniques and procedures by practitioners of the art to which the invention belongs. The descriptions, examples, methods and materials presented in the claims and the specification are not to be construed as limiting but rather as illustrative only.

Meanings of technical and scientific terms used herein are to be commonly understood as by one of ordinary skill in the art to which the invention belongs, unless otherwise defined. The present invention can be implemented in the testing or practice with methods and materials equivalent or similar to those described herein.

Any publications, including patents, patent applications and articles, referenced or mentioned in this specification are herein incorporated in their entirety into the specification, to the same extent as if each individual publication was specifically and individually indicated to be incorporated herein. In addition, citation or identification of any reference in the description of some embodiments of the invention shall not be construed as an admission that such reference is available as prior art to the present invention.

FIG. 1 is block diagram schematically illustrating a system 1000 for sharing information relating to chance games' tickets 10, according to some embodiments of the invention.

The tickets 10 may be any chance game tickets 10 in which a predefined number of tickets 10 “N” include a predefined number winning tickets 10 “W” and a predefined number of non-winning tickets “NW”, where NM=N−W.

The tickets 10 may comprise an indication to the result of the ticket (W/NW) and may also indicate the prize in case of winning. For instance, the tickets 10 may be scratch-off lottery tickets 10 of a lottery chance game allowing users 20 to scratch off predefined areas in the ticket 10 having removable-by-scratching adhesive materials to reveal an indication of the result of the ticket 10.

According to these embodiments, the system 1000 may comprise:

a software application 100;

a multiplicity of users' terminals 30;

at least server 200; and

at least one database 300.

According to some embodiments of the invention, the database 300 may be operatively associated with the application 100 and/or with the server 200.

The users' terminals 30 may be any computerized mediums known in the art enabling communication through at least one communication network 50 (e.g. the internet or the wireless network) such as PCs, laptops, mobile phones with WAP access, PDAs, iPhones and the like.

The server 200 may enable operating the application 100, retrieve and store data from/in the database 300 and communicate with a multiplicity of users 20 through the users' terminals 30 and at least one communication network 50.

According to some embodiments of the invention, as illustrated in FIG. 1, the system 1000 may comprise at least some of:

a user interface 110;

an update module 120;

an inquiry module 130,

a statistical module 140; and

a credibility module 150.

The modules 120-150 may be operatively associated with the interface 110 and with one another.

According to some embodiments of the invention, the interface 110 may enable users 20 to input tickets' 10 related details such as the result of the ticket 10 (wining ticket/non-winning ticket; date of purchasing and the like) according to predefined input options available through the interface 100 and to present updated accumulated tickets related details according to predefined presentation options (e.g. a table presenting recently inputted information and/or recently purchased tickets 10 and their details, as well as statistical factors predicting the chances of purchasing a winning ticket 10 according to accumulated input data).

According to some embodiments of the invention, the update module 120 may allow transmitting, receiving and processing input details of users' 20 purchased tickets 10 and updating the database 300 accordingly. The transmitting of details may be made to the server 200.

The input tickets related details may be inputted by the users 20, using their terminals 30 and the application 100 to update the system 1000 regarding recently purchased tickets 10 of a predefined game.

The interface 110 may further enable users 20 to build a search query according to which the inquiry module 130 may search through the database 300 to allow presenting tickets' related information according to the query. For example, the query may include the number of input tickets details that were purchased in a predefined time-interval (e.g. the last week) outputting these tickets' 10 information in the format of a table.

According to some embodiments of the invention, the statistical module 140 may enable calculating and presenting statistical parameters enabling to predict the chances of a user 20 to purchase a winning ticket 10 at a predefined timing-window, according to recorded and accumulated history of tickets related information stored in the system 1000. For example, the statistical module 140 may enable calculating a chance factor according to a predefined function or algorithm taking in account all tickets details of tickets 10 purchased in the last known issuing time-interval, which may be the time-interval from a known date in which the last issuing of a tickets' 10 series has been made to the current present date.

According to some embodiments of the invention, the credibility module 150 using the interface 110, may enable users 20 to identify themselves when inputting tickets' related details (e.g. by allowing personal account and users 20 registration) and other users 20 to rank the credibility of the inputting users' 20 information, where the interface 110 includes ranking tools to allow the ranking.

According to some embodiments of the invention, as illustrated in FIG. 1, the application 100 may enable communicating with a distribution center 500, which issues and distributes the tickets 10 (e.g. the lottery company), receiving feedbacks relating to the tickets' details inputted by users 20 and other ticket related information from the distribution center 500 and processing the information by cross-checking the center's 500 information with the input details to verify the credibility of the users' 20 input.

According to some embodiments of the invention, the credibility deriving from the feedbacks (which may be textual) from the distribution center 500 may be quantified by a credibility factor, which may be presented to users 20 through the interface 110.

According to some embodiments of the invention, the application 100 may be web application 100 where the server 200 is a web server 200 maintaining a website ran by the application 100, through which users 20, using their terminals 30 may input and view the tickets' related details and other related information.

Additionally or alternatively, the system 1000 may enable users 20 to transmit messages containing the tickets' details (e.g. Short Messages Service (SMS) messages or emails), using their terminals 30 and the communication network 50, where the server 200 may enable storing and processing the received information.

FIG. 2 is a flowchart schematically illustrating a method for allowing users to share information relating to a chance game's tickets 10, according to some embodiments of the invention. The method may comprise at least some of the following described steps:

The user 20 may enter updating interface options 11 allowing the user to input details of one or more tickets 10 that the user purchased. For example, the user 20 may be required to input the date of purchase 12 of each ticket 10; to input the result of each ticket 13 (e.g. W/NW); and to input other details of the ticket 14 (e.g. the prize if the ticket 10 has won any and/or the ticket's 10 number).

The details may then be transmitted 15 to the server 200, which may update the database 300 with those details 16; calculate the winning chance factor 17 according to the input details of a predefined number of recently purchased tickets 10, by processing these details; and update the presentation of the factor 18.

Additionally, the application 100 may present a table displaying the details (e.g. result and date of purchase) of a predefined number of last purchased tickets 10 whose details have been inputted by the users 19.

FIG. 3 is a flowchart schematically illustrating a method for retrieving of a chance game's tickets related information, using the interface 110 and the inquiry module 130, for example, according to some embodiments of the invention. The method may comprise at least some of the following steps:

The user 20 may enter inquiry interface options 21 allowing him to build a search query 22 according to which the inquiry module 130 may search through the database 300 for parameters and details required by the user 20.

Once the query search is completed, the application 100 may enable presenting tickets' related details and statistical parameters according to the query and search results 23.

The presentation of the tickets' details may be accompanied by interface options allowing the user 20 to rank 24 each of the tickets according to the information it presents or according to the details of the inputting user 20. For that purpose, the application 100 credibility module 150 may enable users 20 to identify themselves (even by any name selected by the user 20) and identifying previously registered users according, for example, to their IP address, as known in the art.

The ranking 24 can be carried out according to predefined credibility ranking method available by the application 100. For example, the user 20 may be able to select the number of stars or points out of a predefined maximum number, as known in the art.

Feedbacks on the presented statistical parameters and tickets' information may be received from the distribution center 25 and presented to the users 26 through the application 100.

According to some embodiments of the invention, the feedbacks and/or the ranking of each ticket information may be processed and taken into account in the calculations of the statistical parameters, such as the chance factor.

According to some embodiments of the invention, the feedbacks may be received 26 from other external sources and not solely from the distribution center 500.

While the invention has been described with respect to a limited number of embodiments, these should not be construed as limitations on the scope of the invention, but rather as exemplifications of some of the preferred embodiments. Those skilled in the art will envision other possible variations, modifications, and applications that are also within the scope of the invention. Accordingly, the scope of the invention should not be limited by what has thus far been described, but by the appended claims and their legal equivalents.