Title:
TOY FIGURINE USB FLASH DRIVE
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A toy figurine USB flash drive comprising a casing in the form of a toy figurine which is divided into a body casing which has a torso with four limbs and a head casing which can be connected with or removed from the neck area of the torso; a printed circuit board (PCB) which is disposed inside the torso; a standard type-A USB connector one end of it is mounted on the PCB and the other end of it protrudes from the neck area of the torso and can be covered by the head casing; a USB mass storage controller which is mounted on the PCB to drive the onboard memory; a NAND flash memory chip which is mounted on the PCB to store data; and a crystal oscillator which is mounted on the PCB to control data output through a phase-locked loop; wherein: the four limbs are pivotally connected to the torso forming the two arms and the two legs of the toy figurine, each of the arms can be rotated and raised above the shoulder to rest against the neighboring surface of a USB port into which the USB connector is plugged for support, and each of the legs can be rotated and positioned at a right angle or at a substantially right angle to the torso to form a sitting posture of the toy figurine. The present invention can avoid accidental disconnection from the computer and can be used as a toy for the user to play.



Inventors:
Leung, Chun Fai (Kowloon, HK)
Application Number:
12/182105
Publication Date:
02/04/2010
Filing Date:
07/29/2008
Assignee:
P.S.L. LIMITED (Kowloon, HK)
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63H33/00
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20070049157Toy storage system and method for teaching childrenMarch, 2007Bolar
20090156090Children's learning device with countdown timerJune, 2009Douglas et al.
20090181595BLOCK FOR BUILDING A TOYJuly, 2009Song et al.
20090036219Interactive, thematically-related entertainment system including universally-interchangeable, attachable, design-bearing ornamentsFebruary, 2009Crouch et al.
20090209166Shipping box toyAugust, 2009Chen
20060121820Toy for rotating and aerially launching an objectJune, 2006Laurienzo et al.
20070197126Magnetic SkateParkAugust, 2007Derrah
20080188158Toy construction setAugust, 2008Massa
20070072511USB desktop toyMarch, 2007Zernovizky et al.
20070042668Hand Held LauncherFebruary, 2007Lapointe
20030087580COLOR MEMORY TOYMay, 2003Shibahashi et al.



Primary Examiner:
RADA, ALEX P
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
P.S.L LIMITED (KOWLOON, HK)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A toy figurine USB flash drive comprising a casing in the form of a toy figurine which is divided into a body casing which has a torso with four limbs and a head casing which can be connected with or removed from the neck area of the torso; a printed circuit board (PCB) which is disposed inside the torso; a standard type-A USB connector one end of it is mounted on the PCB and the other end of it protrudes from the neck area of the torso and can be covered by the head casing; a USB mass storage controller which is mounted on the PCB to drive the onboard memory; a NAND flash memory chip which is mounted on the PCB to store data; and a crystal oscillator which is mounted on the PCB to control data output through a phase-locked loop; wherein the four limbs are pivotally connected to the torso forming the two arms and the two legs of the toy figurine, each of the arms can be rotated and raised above the shoulder to rest against the neighboring surface of a USB port into which the USB connector is plugged for support, and each of the legs can be rotated and positioned at a right angle or at a substantially right angle to the torso to form a sitting posture of the toy figurine.

2. The toy figurine USB flash drive as in claim 1, wherein each of the arms has a pivotally connected hand and when the arm is raised above the shoulder, the hand rests against the neighboring surface of the USB port into which the USB connector is plugged for support.

3. The toy figurine USB flash drive as in claim 1, wherein each of the arms is divided into the upper arm and the lower arm with the upper arm pivotally connected to the torso and the lower arm pivotally connected to the upper arm, and the upper arm can be rotated and moved away at a right angle or at a substantially right angle from the torso, and the lower arm can be rotated and raised above the shoulder to rest against the neighboring surface of the USB port into which the USB connector is plugged for support.

4. The toy figurine USB flash drive as in claim 3, wherein each of the lower arms has a pivotally connected hand and when the lower arm is raised above the shoulder, the hand rests against the neighboring surface of the USB port into which the USB connector is plugged for support.

5. The toy figurine USB flash drive as in claim 1, wherein each of the legs has a pivotally connected foot and when the toy figurine is in its sitting posture, the toe area of the foot can point upward.

6. The toy figurine USB flash drive as in claim 1, wherein each of the legs is divided into the thigh and the shank with the thigh pivotally connected to the torso and the shank pivotally connected to the knee area of the thigh, and the thigh can be rotated and positioned at a right angle or at a substantially right angle to the torso to form a sitting posture of the toy figurine with the shank extended from the knee area of the thigh resting against the surface for support, and the thigh can be slightly rotated backward from the torso with the shank rotated backward and positioned at a right angle or at a substantially right angle to the thigh resting against the surface for support to form a kneeing posture of the toy figurine.

7. The toy figurine USB flash drive as in claim 6, wherein each of the shanks has a pivotally connected foot, and when the toy figurine is in its sitting posture, the toe area of the foot can point upward, and when the toy figurine is in its kneeing posture, the toe area of the foot can point downward and rest against the surface for support.

8. The toy figurine USB flash drive as in claim 1, wherein the head casing is connected to the back of the torso by means of a connecting member to avoid the head casing from being misplaced or lost.

9. The toy figurine USB flash drive as in claim 1, wherein the top or the back of the head casing has a perforation for attaching to a keychain, necklace or lanyard.

10. A toy figurine USB flash drive comprising a casing in the form of an animal figurine which is divided into a body casing which has a torso with forelimbs and hindlimbs and a head casing which can be connected with or removed from the neck area of the torso.

11. The toy figurine USB flash drive as in claim 10, wherein the forelimbs and the hindlimbs are pivotally connected to the torso, and each of the forelimbs and the hindlimbs has a pivotally connected paw, the forelimbs can be rotated forward and the paws can therefore rest against the neighboring surface of the USB port into which the USB connector is plugged for support in order to avoid accidental disconnection from the computer.

12. The toy figurine USB flash drive as in claim 11, wherein both the forelimbs and the hindlimbs can be rotated forward to form a sitting posture of the dog with the forelimbs and the hindlimbs resting against the surface for support and the claw areas of the paws pointing upward.

13. The toy figurine USB flash drive as in claim 11, wherein the hindlimbs can be rotated backward with the bottom surfaces of the paws and the bottom surface or a tail of the dog resting on a surface to form a standing posture of the dog.

14. The toy figurine USB flash drive as in claim 11, wherein the forelimbs can be rotated forward while the hindlimbs can be rotated backward to form a crouching posture of the dog.

15. The toy figurine USB flash drive as in claim 10, wherein the head casing may have a perforation at its top or back for attaching to a keychain, necklace or lanyard.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a flash memory data storage device and more particularly pertains to a portable USB flash drive.

USB flash drives are commonly used for storing and transporting data, application and software files from one location to another so that the files may be accessed in a variety of places. Existing flash drives come in different shapes and sizes. For low costs of production and increased portability, a conventional flash drive is compact in size having a plastic casing in a round-cornered geometrical shape. The rectangular shape is the most typical. From the plastic casing, a standard type-A USB connector protrudes and it is protected either by a removable cap or by retracting into the casing. Owing to its small size, the conventional flash drive is easily misplaced or otherwise lost. This had led to the common practice of attaching the flash drive to a keychain, necklace or lanyard. However, it remains to be easily left behind as the user is used to forget to remove it from the USB port on a computer. Further, the geometrical shape is generally not appealing.

To attract purchasers and users, some USB flash drives are integrated into other tools commonly carried on a person such as watches, pens, timers and so forth so as to add other functions to the flash drives. Some may even generate audio or visual alarming signals to remind the users to remove them from the USB ports after a period of time. While the casings of such flash drives are larger in size and so they are not that easily left behind, they are of more complicated construction and are thus susceptible of higher costs of manufacture and higher prices of sale.

Therefore, there are some other USB flash drives in the marketplace which are only fitted with decorative casings such as toy figurines so as to make them look attractive without substantially increasing their production costs. These toy figurine USB flash drives are generally bulky in size making them relatively difficult to plug the USB connectors into the USB ports on the computers. Further, the bulky and likely overweight casings can easily cause accidental disconnection of the flash drives from the host computers. In addition, the toy figurines are constructed in fixed forms and cannot be changed, and so the outward appearances become prosaic easily.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

In view of the aforesaid disadvantages now present in the prior art, the object of the present invention is to provide a toy figurine USB flash drive which avoids accidental disconnection from the computer, has an attractive and changeable outward appearance, and is susceptible of relatively lower costs of manufacture.

To attain this, the present invention adopts the following technical proposal:

A toy figurine USB flash drive comprising a casing in the form of a toy figurine which is divided into a body casing which has a torso with four limbs and a head casing which can be connected with or removed from the neck area of the torso; a printed circuit board (PCB) which is disposed inside the torso; a standard type-A USB connector one end of it is mounted on the PCB and the other end of it protrudes from the neck area of the torso and can be covered by the head casing; a USB mass storage controller which is mounted on the PCB to drive the onboard memory; a NAND flash memory chip which is mounted on the PCB to store data; and a crystal oscillator which is mounted on the PCB to control data output through a phase-locked loop; wherein the four limbs are pivotally connected to the torso forming the two arms and the two legs of the toy figurine, each of the arms can be rotated and raised above the shoulder to rest against the neighboring surface of a USB port into which the USB connector is plugged for support, and each of the legs can be rotated and positioned at a right angle or at a substantially right angle to the torso to form a sitting posture of the toy figurine.

Each of the arms has a pivotally connected hand and when the arm is raised above the shoulder, the hand rests against the neighboring surface of the USB port into which the USB connector is plugged for support.

Alternatively, each of the arms is divided into the upper arm and the lower arm with the upper arm pivotally connected to the torso and the lower arm pivotally connected to the upper arm, and the upper arm can be rotated and moved away at a right angle or at a substantially right angle from the torso, and the lower arm can be rotated and raised above the shoulder to rest against the neighboring surface of the USB port into which the USB connector is plugged for support. As a further alternative, each of the lower arms has a pivotally connected hand and when the lower arm is raised above the shoulder, the hand rests against the neighboring surface of the USB port into which the USB connector is plugged for support.

Each of the legs has a pivotally connected foot and when the toy figurine is in its sitting posture, the toe area of the foot can point upward.

Each of the legs is divided into the thigh and the shank with the thigh pivotally connected to the torso and the shank pivotally connected to the knee area of the thigh, and the thigh can be rotated and positioned at a right angle or at a substantially right angle to the torso to form a sitting posture of the toy figurine with the shank extended from the knee area of the thigh resting against the surface for support, and the thigh can be vertically extended from the torso with the shank rotated backward and positioned at a right angle or at a substantially right angle to the thigh resting against the surface for support to form a kneeing posture of the toy figurine. As an alternative, each of the shanks has a pivotally connected foot, and when the toy figurine is in its sitting posture, the toe area of the foot can point upward, and when the toy figurine is in its kneeing posture, the toe area of the foot can point downward and rest against the surface for support.

The head casing is connected to the back of the torso by means of a connecting member to avoid the head casing from being misplaced or lost.

The top or the back of the head casing has a perforation for attaching to a keychain, necklace or lanyard.

The present invention operates as follows:

When the USB flash drive is used for data transfer and/or data storage, the user simply removes the head casing from the body casing and plugs the USB connector as protruded from the body casing into a USB port on a computer. To avoid accidental disconnection of the flash drive from the computer, the user can rotate and raise the two arms above the shoulder and make the two arms rest against the neighboring surface of the USB port for support. If the flash drive has two hands, the user can make the hands instead of the arms rest against the neighboring surface of the USB port for support. And, if the flash drive has two lower arms pivotally connected to the respective upper arms, the user can rotate the upper arms to make them move away at a right angle or at a substantially right angle from the torso and then rotate and raise the lower arms above the shoulder and make them rest against the neighboring surface of the USB port for support.

When the user finishes using the USB flash drive, the user can rotate back the arms or the hands and remove them from the neighboring surface of the USB port and then plug out the USB connector and put the head casing back to the neck area of the torso to cover the USB connector.

When the USB flash drive is not in use, it can be used as a toy for the user to play with by rotating its four limbs to form different postures such as standing, walking, running, sitting and crouching. If it has thighs and shanks, it can have more detailed postures such as kneeing and squatting. If it has hands, it can have postures such as holding a small message card or a small pen. When it is in its sitting, crouching, kneeing or squatting posture, it can stay on a surface such as the desktop securely and its arms may embrace something and it can be a paperweight by sheer of its weight and so it can present a decorative ornament of practical use. Its changeable outward appearance makes it attractive to the user even after a long period of use.

The advantages of the invention are that in comparison with the prior art the arms or the hands of the present invention can be rotated and raised above the shoulder to rest against the neighboring surface of the USB port for support, thereby avoiding accidental disconnection from the computer. Further, it can be used as a toy for the user to play with by rotating its four limbs to form different postures. The changeable outward appearance of the present invention makes it more attractive to the user than the existing USB flash drives. In addition, the present invention is not integrated with any other tools and is only fitted with a toy figurine decorative casing and so it is susceptible of lower costs of manufacture.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is the front elevational view of the first embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is the front elevational view of the first embodiment with the head casing removed from the body casing.

FIG. 3 is the schematic view illustrating the connection of the first embodiment with a computer.

FIG. 4 is the schematic diagram showing the circuitry of the first embodiment.

FIG. 5 is the perspective view showing a walking posture of the first embodiment.

FIG. 6 is the perspective view showing a running posture of the first embodiment.

FIG. 7 is the perspective view showing the sitting posture of the first embodiment.

FIG. 8 is another perspective view showing the sitting posture of the first embodiment.

FIG. 9 is the perspective view showing the kneeing posture of the first embodiment.

FIG. 10 is the perspective view showing the squatting posture of the first embodiment.

FIG. 11 is the front elevational view of the second embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 12 is the front elevational view of the second embodiment with the head casing removed from the body casing.

FIG. 13 is the schematic view illustrating the connection of the second embodiment with a computer.

FIG. 14 is the perspective view showing a sitting posture of the second embodiment.

FIG. 15 is the perspective view showing a standing posture of the second embodiment.

FIG. 16 is the perspective view showing a crouching posture of the second embodiment.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

The preferred embodiments of the present invention are further described in detail with the following embodiments and the accompanying drawings.

FIGS. 1 to 10 illustrates the construction of the first embodiment of the present invention and the first embodiment is a USB flash drive with a toy figurine casing in the image of a human being. As illustrated in FIGS. 1, 2 and 4, the first embodiment comprises a casing in the form of a soccer player which is divided into a body casing which has a torso 1 with two arms and two legs and a head casing 2 which can be connected with or removed from the neck area of the torso 1; a printed circuit board (PCB) which is disposed inside the torso 1; a standard type-A USB connector 3 one end of it is mounted on the PCB and the other end of it protrudes from the neck area of the torso 1 and can be covered by the head casing 2; a USB mass storage controller 4 which is mounted on the PCB to drive the onboard memory; a NAND flash memory chip 5 which is mounted on the PCB to store data; and a crystal oscillator 6 which is mounted on the PCB to control data output through a phase-locked loop.

As illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 2, the arms and the legs are pivotally connected to the torso 1. Each of the arms is divided into the upper arm 11 and the lower arm 12 with the upper arm 11 pivotally connected to the torso 1 and the lower arm 12 pivotally connected to the upper arm 11, and the lower arm 12 has a pivotally connected hand 13. As illustrated in FIG. 3, the upper arm 11 can be rotated and moved away at a right angle or at a substantially right angle from the torso 1, and therefore the upper arm 11 together with the lower arm 12 and the hand 13 can rest against the neighboring surface of the USB port into which the USB connector 3 is plugged for support.

As illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 2, each of the legs is divided into the thigh 14 and the shank 15 with the thigh 14 pivotally connected to the torso 1 and the shank 15 pivotally connected to the knee area of the thigh 14, and the shank 15 has a foot 16. In other embodiments, not illustrated in the drawings, the foot 16 can be pivotally connected to the shank 15. As illustrated in FIGS. 7 and 8, the thigh 14 can be rotated and positioned at a right angle or at a substantially right angle to the torso 1 to form a sitting posture of the soccer player with the shank 15 extended from the knee area of the thigh 14 resting against the surface for support and the toe area of the foot 16 pointing upward. As illustrated in FIG. 9, the thigh 14 can be slightly rotated backward from the torso 1 with the shank 15 rotated backward and positioned at a right angle or at a substantially right angle to the thigh 14 to form a kneeing posture of the soccer player with the toe area of the foot 16 pointing downward and resting against the surface for support.

As illustrated in FIG. 3, when the first embodiment is used for data transfer and/or data storage, the user simply removes the head casing 2 from the torso 1 and plugs the USB connector 3 as protruded from the torso 1 into a USB port on a computer. To avoid accidental disconnection of the flash drive from the computer, the user can rotate the upper arms 11 to make them move away at a right angle or at a substantially right angle from the torso 1 and make the upper arm 11 together with the lower arm 12 and the hands 13 rest against the neighboring surface of the USB port for support. When the user finishes using the first embodiment, the user can rotate back the upper arms 11 and remove the lower arms 12 and the hands 13 from the neighboring surface of the USB port and then plug out the USB connector 3 and put the head casing 2 back to the torso 1 to cover the USB connector 3.

When the first embodiment is not in use, it can be used as a toy for the user to play with by rotating its upper arms 11, lower arms 12, hands 13, thighs 14, shanks 15 and/or feet 16 to form different postures such as standing as illustrated in FIG. 1, walking as illustrated in FIG. 5, running as illustrated in FIG. 6, sitting and holding a small message card as illustrated in FIGS. 7 and 8, kneeing as illustrated in FIG. 9 and squatting as illustrated in FIG. 10. When it is in its sitting, kneeing or squatting posture, it can stay on a surface securely and its arms may embrace something and it can be a paperweight by sheer of its weight and so it can present a decorative ornament of practical use. Its changeable outward appearance makes it attractive to the user even after a long period of use.

Not illustrated in the drawings, the head casing 2 may be connected to the back of the torso 1 by means of a connecting member to avoid the head casing 2 from being misplaced or lost.

FIGS. 11 to 16 illustrates the construction of the second embodiment of the present invention and the first embodiment is a USB flash drive with a toy figurine casing in the image of an animal. As illustrated in FIGS. 10 and 11, the second embodiment is similar to the first embodiment in construction in the sense that they have the same circuitry as illustrated in FIG. 4 but the second embodiment has a toy figurine casing in different construction and it comprises a casing in the form of a dog which is divided into a body casing which has a torso 1 with forelimbs 11 and hindlimbs 12 and a head casing 2 which can be connected with or removed from the neck area of the torso 1.

As illustrated in FIGS. 11 and 12, the forelimbs 11 and the hindlimbs 12 are pivotally connected to the torso 1, and each of the forelimbs 11 and the hindlimbs 12 has a paw. In other embodiments, not illustrated in the drawings, the paw can be pivotally connected to the forelimbs 11 and the hindlimbs 12. As illustrated in FIG. 13, the forelimbs 11 can be rotated forward and the paws 13 can therefore rest against the neighboring surface of the USB port into which the USB connector 3 is plugged for support in order to avoid accidental disconnection from the computer.

As illustrated in FIG. 14, both the forelimbs 11 and the hindlimbs 12 can be rotated forward to form a sitting posture of the dog with the forelimbs 11 and the hindlimbs 12 resting against the surface for support and the claw areas of the paws 13 pointing upward. As illustrated in FIG. 15, the hindlimbs 12 can be rotated backward with the bottom surfaces of the paws 13 and the bottom surface or a tail of the dog resting on a surface to form a standing posture of the dog. As illustrated in FIG. 16, the forelimbs 11 can be rotated forward while the hindlimbs 12 can be rotated backward to form a crouching posture of the dog. Therefore, when it is in its sitting, standing or crouching posture, it can stay on a surface securely and it can be a paperweight by sheer of its weight and so it can present a decorative ornament of practical use. Its changeable outward appearance makes it attractive to the user even after a long period of use.

Not illustrated in the drawings, the head casing 2 may have a perforation at its top or back for attaching to a keychain, necklace or lanyard.

The above embodiments are preferred embodiments of the present invention. The present invention is capable of other embodiments and is not limited by the above embodiments. Any other variation, decoration, substitution, combination or simplification, whether in substance or in principle, not deviated from the spirit of the present invention, is replacement or substitution of equivalent effect and falls within the scope of protection of the present invention.

As to a further discussion of the manner of usage and operation of the present invention, the same should be apparent from the above description. Accordingly, no further discussion relating to the manner of usage and operation is provided.

With respect to the above description, it is to be realized that the optimum relationships for the parts of the invention in regard to size, shape, form, materials, function and manner of operation, assembly and use are deemed readily apparent and obvious to those skilled in the art, and all equivalent relationships to those illustrated in the drawings and described in the specification are intended to be encompassed by the present invention.

It is to be understood that the phraseology and terminology employed herein are for the purpose of description and should not be regarded as limiting. Therefore, the foregoing is considered as illustrative only of the principles of the invention.





 
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