(19)
(11)EP 3 171 549 B1

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT SPECIFICATION

(45)Mention of the grant of the patent:
04.07.2018 Bulletin 2018/27

(21)Application number: 16194494.7

(22)Date of filing:  19.10.2016
(51)Int. Cl.: 
H04W 72/04  (2009.01)
H04L 12/28  (2006.01)
H04W 4/70  (2018.01)
H04L 12/24  (2006.01)

(54)

SMART DEVICE GROUPING SYSTEM, METHOD AND APPARATUS

INTELLIGENTES VORRICHTUNGSGRUPPIERUNGSSYSTEM, VERFAHREN UND VORRICHTUNG

SYSTÈME DE GROUPAGE DE DISPOSITIFS INTELLIGENTS, PROCÉDÉ ET APPAREIL


(84)Designated Contracting States:
AL AT BE BG CH CY CZ DE DK EE ES FI FR GB GR HR HU IE IS IT LI LT LU LV MC MK MT NL NO PL PT RO RS SE SI SK SM TR

(30)Priority: 17.11.2015 CN 201510789757

(43)Date of publication of application:
24.05.2017 Bulletin 2017/21

(73)Proprietor: Xiaomi Inc.
Beijing 100085 (CN)

(72)Inventors:
  • CHEN, Hong
    BEIJING, 100085 (CN)
  • JIA, Weiguang
    BEIJING, 100085 (CN)
  • HOU, Enxing
    BEIJING, 100085 (CN)

(74)Representative: Delumeau, François Guy et al
Cabinet Beau de Loménie 158, rue de l'Université
75340 Paris Cedex 07
75340 Paris Cedex 07 (FR)


(56)References cited: : 
EP-A1- 1 612 999
WO-A1-2015/167666
EP-A1- 2 793 521
CN-A- 104 932 455
  
      
    Note: Within nine months from the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent, any person may give notice to the European Patent Office of opposition to the European patent granted. Notice of opposition shall be filed in a written reasoned statement. It shall not be deemed to have been filed until the opposition fee has been paid. (Art. 99(1) European Patent Convention).


    Description

    TECHNICAL FIELD



    [0001] The present invention is related to the field of smart home devices, and more particularly, to a smart device grouping system, method and apparatus.

    BACKGROUND



    [0002] With the development of smart home technology, users can control smart home appliances using mobile terminals.

    [0003] However, as the number of smart home appliances in a house increases, the number of smart home appliances to be controlled by mobile terminals also increases. For example, multiple smart electric lamps may be provided in the same room. When these lamps need to be turned off, a user needs to select these lamps one by one from a device list using his/her mobile terminal and turn off these lamps one by one. Such a control process is of rather low efficiency.

    [0004] Document CN 104935455 A discloses a method and an apparatus for grouping a smart device in a smart home system.

    [0005] Document EP 1 612 999 A1 discloses a system and method in a wireless (Wi-Fi) network comprising a server, clients and various mechanisms that compute lists of other clients and resources that are physically nearby.

    [0006] Document EP 2 793 521 A1 discloses a node grouping method, a node, and an access point AP.

    [0007] Document WO 2015/167666 A1 discloses methods implemented by a requesting device and a responding device for collectively identifying one or more clusters of nearby computing devices by collaborating and sharing information.

    SUMMARY



    [0008] To solve the problem of low control efficiency in the prior arts caused by having to select smart devices one by one before controlling the same, the present invention provides a smart device grouping system, method and apparatus.

    [0009] According to a first aspect of embodiments of the present invention, there is provided a smart device grouping system comprising a grouping terminal and at least two selected smart devices. The grouping terminal is configured to transmit a transmission power value to each of the selected smart devices. Each of the smart devices is configured to: broadcast a signal based on the transmission power value; and after receiving signals broadcast by the other one or more of the smart devices based on the transmission power value, generate pieces of signal strength information respectively based on signal strengths of the received signals and identifications of the smart devices sending the received signals. The grouping terminal is further configured to acquire the pieces of signal strength information generated by each smart device and group the selected smart devices based on the pieces of signal strength information.

    [0010] The technical solution provided by the embodiments of the present invention may produce the following advantageous effects. Because the grouping terminal transmits the transmission power value to the smart devices, each of the smart devices can broadcast a signal based on the transmission power value, receive signal(s) broadcast by the other smart device(s) based on the transmission power value, and feed received signal strength(s) back to the grouping terminal, which groups the smart devices based on the signal strengths. Because the grouping terminal can control each of the smart devices to broadcast a signal based on the same power and to collect power strength(s) of signal(s) sent by the other smart device(s) and then the grouping terminal can perform automatic grouping based on the power strengths, the technical problem of low efficiency in the prior arts caused by having to select smart devices one by one before controlling the same can be solved, and the effect of automatic grouping and collectively controlling the smart devices can be achieved.

    [0011] Optionally, each piece of signal strength information further includes an identification of the smart device which generates the piece of signal strength information, and the grouping terminal is further configured to: acquire identifications included in the pieces of signal strength information; select pieces of signal strength information including different identifications from the pieces of signal strength information; put at least some of the selected pieces of signal strength information into a group based on signal strengths included in the selected pieces of signal strength information, wherein an absolute value of a difference between each other of signal strengths included in the group of pieces of signal strength information being smaller than a predetermined difference threshold; obtain identifications included in the group of pieces of signal strength information, and determine smart devices having the obtained identifications as belonging to a group.

    [0012] The technical solution provided by the optional embodiment of the present invention may produce the following advantageous effect. Because the signal propagation loss in the same room is relatively small and the signal propagation loss between different rooms is relatively large, it can be ensured that, by grouping senders and receivers associated with signal strengths differing from each other by less than a predetermined difference threshold into the same group, the smart devices in the same room can be successfully grouped into the same group.

    [0013] Optionally, the grouping terminal is further configured to: acquire types of smart devices in each group, and group smart devices of a same type in the group into a sub-group, the type being a smart electric lamp type or a smart socket type.

    [0014] The technical solution provided by the optional embodiment of the present invention may produce the following advantageous effect. Because multiple types of smart devices may be located in the same room, by grouping based on the types, it is more convenient for a user to control and maintain the smart devices in the same room. For example, the smart electric lamps in the same room may be turned off at the same time, or the smart sockets in the same room may be powered on at the same time.

    [0015] According to a second aspect of the embodiments of the present invention, there is provided a smart device grouping method, comprising: transmitting a transmission power value to each of selected smart devices; acquiring pieces of signal strength information sent by each smart device, wherein said pieces of signal strength information are generated by the smart device after the smart device receives signals broadcast by the other one or more of the smart devices based on the transmission power value, respectively based on signal strengths of the received signals and identifications of the smart devices sending the received signals; and grouping the selected smart devices according to the pieces of signal strength information sent by said each smart device.

    [0016] The technical solution provided by the embodiments of the present invention may produce the following advantageous effects. Because the grouping terminal transmits the transmission power value to the smart devices, each of the smart devices can broadcast a signal based on the transmission power value, receive signal(s) broadcast by the other smart device(s) based on the transmission power value, and feed received signal strength(s) back to the grouping terminal, which groups the smart devices based on the signal strengths. Because the grouping terminal can control each of the smart devices to broadcast a signal based on the same power and to collect power strength(s) of signal(s) sent by the other smart device(s) and then the grouping terminal can perform automatic grouping based on the power strengths, the technical problem of low efficiency in the prior arts caused by having to select smart devices one by one before controlling the smart devices can be solved, and the effect of automatic grouping and collectively controlling the smart devices can be achieved.

    [0017] Optionally, each piece of signal strength information further includes an identification of the smart device which generates the piece of signal strength information, and said grouping the selected smart devices according to the pieces of signal strength information sent by said each smart device comprises: acquiring identifications included in the pieces of signal strength information; selecting pieces of signal strength information including different identifications from the pieces of signal strength information; putting at least some of the selected pieces of signal strength information into a group based on signal strengths included in the selected pieces of signal strength information, wherein an absolute value of a difference between each other of signal strengths included in the group of pieces of signal strength information being smaller than a predetermined difference threshold; and obtaining identifications included in the group of pieces of signal strength information, and determining smart devices having the obtained identifications into a group.

    [0018] The technical solution provided by the optional embodiment of the present invention may produce the following advantageous effect. Because the signal propagation loss in the same room is relatively small and the signal propagation loss between different rooms is relatively large, it can be ensured that, by grouping senders and receivers associated with signal strengths differing from each other by less than a predetermined difference threshold into the same group, the smart devices in the same room can be successfully grouped into the same group.

    [0019] Optionally, the method further comprises: acquiring types of smart devices in the group, the types including a smart electric lamp type and a smart socket type; and grouping smart devices of a same type in the group into a sub-group.

    [0020] The technical solution provided by the optional embodiment of the present invention may produce the following advantageous effect. Because multiple types of smart devices may be located in the same room, by grouping based on the types, it is more convenient for a user to control and maintain the smart devices in the same room. For example, the smart electric lamps in the same room may be turned off at the same time, or the smart sockets in the same room may be powered on at the same time.

    [0021] Optionally, the method further comprises: determining smart devices bound to a same user account as the selected smart devices; or determining smart devices located in a same local area network (LAN) as the selected smart devices.

    [0022] The technical solution provided by the optional embodiment of the present invention may produce the following advantageous effect. The selected smart devices can be determined automatically based on a user account or a LAN, so that the user is saved from adding smart devices by himself/herself tediously and accuracy of acquiring the selected smart devices can be ensured.

    [0023] Optionally, the method further comprises: receiving a control instruction for controlling the smart devices in a designated group; and sending the control instruction to the smart devices in the designated group.

    [0024] The technical solution provided by the optional embodiment of the present invention may produce the following advantageous effect. The smart devices in the designated group can be controlled based on a control instruction for the group, thereby improving the control efficiency.

    [0025] According to a third aspect of the embodiments of the present invention, there is provided a smart device grouping method, comprising: receiving signals broadcast by one or more smart devices, the signals being sent by the smart devices according to a transmission power value after the smart devices receive the transmission power value; for a signal received from each of the smart devices, generating a piece of signal strength information based on a received signal strength of the signal and an identification of the smart device sending the signal; and sending the piece of signal strength information generated for each of the smart devices to a grouping terminal, to trigger the grouping terminal to group, based on the pieces of signal strength information acquired by the grouping terminal, smart devices generating respective sets of pieces of signal strength information.

    [0026] The technical solutions provided by the embodiments of the present invention may produce the following advantageous effects. Because the grouping terminal transmits the transmission power value to the smart devices, each of the smart devices can broadcast a signal based on the transmission power value, receive signal(s) broadcast by the other smart device(s) based on the transmission power value, and feed received signal strength(s) back to the grouping terminal, which groups the smart devices based on the signal strength(s). Because the grouping terminal can control each of the smart devices to broadcast a signal based on the same power and to collect power strengths of signal(s) sent by the other smart device(s) and then the grouping terminal can perform automatic grouping based on the power strengths, the technical problem of low efficiency in the prior arts caused by having to select smart devices one by one before controlling the same can be solved, and the effect of automatic grouping and collectively controlling the smart devices can be achieved.

    [0027] Optionally, the method further comprises: receiving a transmission power value transmitted by the grouping terminal; broadcasting a signal based on the transmission power value, the signal carrying an identification of a smart device broadcasting the signal.

    [0028] The present invention also provides smart device grouping apparatuses for realizing the smart device grouping methods of the second and third aspects respectively. For details, reference can be made to the following fourth to seventh aspects.

    [0029] According to a fourth aspect of the embodiments of the present invention, there is provided a smart device grouping apparatus, comprising: a power value transmitting module configured to transmit a transmission power value to each of selected smart devices; an acquiring module configured to acquire pieces of signal strength information sent by said each smart device, wherein said pieces of signal strength information are generated by the smart device after the smart device receives signals broadcast by the other one or more of the smart devices based on the transmission power value transmitted by the power value transmitting module, respectively based on signal strengths of the received signals and identifications of the smart devices sending the received signals; and a grouping module configured to group the selected smart devices based on the pieces of signal strength information sent by each smart device and acquired by the acquiring module.

    [0030] Optionally, each piece of signal strength information acquired by the acquiring module further comprises an identification of the smart device which generates the piece of signal strength information, and the grouping module comprises: an identification acquiring sub-module configured to acquire identifications included in the pieces of signal strength information; a selecting sub-module configured to select pieces of signal strength information including different identifications from the pieces of signal strength information; a grouping sub-module configured to put at least some of the selected pieces of signal strength information selected by the selecting sub-module into a group based on signal strengths included in the selected pieces of signal strength information, wherein an absolute value of a difference between each other of signal strengths included in the group of pieces of signal strength information being smaller than a predetermined difference threshold; and an identification grouping sub-module configured to obtain identifications included in the group of pieces of signal strength information and determine smart devices having the obtained identifications into a group.

    [0031] Optionally, the apparatus further comprises: a type acquiring sub-module configured to acquire types of smart devices in the group, the types include a smart electric lamp type and a smart socket type; and a type grouping sub-module configured to group smart devices of a same type in the group into a sub-group based on the types of smart devices in the group acquired by the type acquiring sub-module.

    [0032] Optionally, the apparatus further comprises: a first determining module configured to determine smart devices bound to a same user account as the selected smart devices; or a second determining module configured to determine smart devices located in a same local area network (LAN) as the selected smart devices.

    [0033] Optionally, the apparatus further comprises: an instruction receiving module configured to receive a control instruction for controlling smart devices in a designated group; and an instruction sending module configured to send the control instruction to the smart devices in the designated group.

    [0034] According to a fifth aspect of the embodiments of the present invention, there is provided a smart device grouping apparatus, comprising: a receiving module configured to receive signals broadcast by one or more other smart devices, the signals being sent by the smart devices according to a transmission power value after the smart devices receive the transmission power value; a generating module configured to: for a signal sent by each of the smart devices, generate a piece of signal strength information based on a received signal strength of the signal and an identification of the smart device sending the signal; and a sending module configured to send the piece of signal strength information generated by the generating module for each of the smart devices a grouping terminal, to trigger the grouping terminal to group, based on the pieces of signal strength information acquired by the grouping terminal, smart devices generating respective sets of pieces of signal strength information.

    [0035] Optionally, the apparatus further comprises: a power value receiving module configured to receive a transmission power value transmitted by the grouping terminal; a broadcasting module configured to broadcast a signal based on the transmission power value received by the power value receiving module, the signal carrying an identification of a smart device broadcasting the signal.

    [0036] According to a sixth aspect of the embodiments of the present invention, there is provided a smart device grouping apparatus, characterized by comprising: a processor; and a memory storing instructions executable by the processor, wherein the processor is configured to: transmit a transmission power value to each of selected smart devices; acquire pieces of signal strength information fed back by said each smart device, wherein said pieces of signal strength information are generated by the smart device after the smart device receives signals broadcast by the other one or more of the smart devices based on the transmission power value, respectively based on signal strengths of the received signals and identifications of the smart devices sending the received signal; and group the selected smart devices according to the pieces of signal strength information fed back by said each smart device.

    [0037] According to a seventh aspect of the embodiments of the present invention, there is provided a smart device grouping apparatus, characterized by comprising: a processor; and a memory storing instructions executable by the processor, wherein the processor is configured to: receive signals broadcast by one or more other smart devices, the signals being sent by the smart devices according to a transmission power value after the smart devices receive the transmission power value; for a signal sent by each of the smart devices, generate a piece of signal strength information based on a received signal strength of the signal and an identification of the smart device sending the signal; and send the piece of signal strength information generated for each of the smart devices to a grouping terminal, to trigger the grouping terminal to group, based on the pieces of signal strength information acquired by the grouping terminal, smart devices generating respective sets of pieces of signal strength information.

    [0038] The advantages and features of the system and apparatuses according to the embodiments of the present invention are the same with those of the above described methods and will not be repeated here.

    [0039] In a particular embodiment, the steps of the smart device grouping methods are determined by computer program instructions.

    [0040] Consequently, according to an eighth aspect, the invention is also directed to a computer program for executing, when this program is executed by a computer, the steps of the smart device grouping methods.

    [0041] This program can use any programming language and take the form of source code, object code or a code intermediate between source code and object code, such as a partially compiled form, or any other desirable form.

    [0042] The invention is also directed to a computer-readable information medium containing instructions of a computer program as described above.

    [0043] The information medium can be any entity or device capable of storing the program. For example, the support can include storage means such as a ROM, for example a CD ROM or a microelectronic circuit ROM, or magnetic storage means, for example a diskette (floppy disk) or a hard disk.

    [0044] Alternatively, the information medium can be an integrated circuit in which the program is incorporated, the circuit being adapted to execute the method in question or to be used in its execution.

    [0045] It should be understood that both the foregoing general description and the following detailed description are exemplary and explanatory only and are not restrictive of the invention.

    BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS



    [0046] The accompanying drawings, which are incorporated in and constitute a part of this specification, illustrate embodiments consistent with the invention and, together with the description, serve to explain the principles of the invention.

    Fig. 1 is a schematic drawing showing an application environment where a smart device grouping method is implemented according to some embodiments;

    Fig. 2A is a block diagram showing a smart device grouping system according to an embodiment;

    Fig. 2B is a schematic drawing showing how to group smart devices in two rooms according to an embodiment;

    Fig. 3 is a flow chart showing a smart device grouping method according to an embodiment;

    Fig. 4 is a flow chart showing a smart device grouping method according to another embodiment;

    Fig. 5 is a flow chart showing a smart device grouping method according to yet another embodiment;

    Fig. 6 is a flow chart showing a smart device grouping method according to still another embodiment;

    Fig. 7 is a block diagram showing a smart device grouping apparatus according to an embodiment;

    Fig. 8 is a block diagram showing a smart device grouping apparatus according to another embodiment;

    Fig. 9 is a block diagram showing a smart device grouping apparatus according to yet another embodiment;

    Fig. 10 is a block diagram showing a smart device grouping apparatus according to still another embodiment;

    Fig. 11 is a block diagram showing a smart device grouping apparatus according to a further embodiment; and

    Fig. 12 is a block diagram showing a smart device grouping apparatus according to yet a further embodiment.


    DETAILED DESCRIPTION



    [0047] Reference will now be made in detail to exemplary embodiments, examples of which are illustrated in the accompanying drawings. The following description refers to the accompanying drawings in which the same numbers in different drawings represent the same or similar elements unless otherwise presented. The embodiments set forth in the following description of exemplary embodiments do not represent all embodiments consistent with the invention. Instead, they are merely examples of apparatuses and methods consistent with aspects related to the invention as recited in the appended claims.

    [0048] Fig. 1 is a schematic drawing showing an application environment where a smart device grouping method is implemented according to some embodiments. As shown in Fig. 1, the application environment may include a grouping terminal 120 and at least two smart devices 140.

    [0049] The grouping terminal 120 may be a device having a computing function, such as a mobile phone, a tablet computer, a server or the like.

    [0050] The smart device 140 may be a device having a radio signal transmitting and receiving function, such as a smart electric lamp, a smart socket, a smart TV or the like. In actual house scenes, some smart devices 140 may be located in the same room, while other smart devices 140 may be located in a different room. A user may control all the smart devices in the same room at the same time.

    [0051] The smart devices 140 may be connected to one another via wireless networks, which may be Bluetooth networks, NFC (Near Field Communication) networks and Zigbee (Zigzag Flying of Bees) networks.

    [0052] The grouping terminal 120 may be connected with the smart devices 140 via wired networks or wireless networks.

    [0053] Optionally, the application environment may include a router 160 which provides Wi-Fi (Wireless-Fidelity) connections for the grouping terminal 120 and the smart devices 140.

    [0054] Fig. 2A is a block diagram showing a smart device grouping system according to an embodiment. As shown in Fig. 2A, the smart device grouping system may include a grouping terminal 210 and at least two selected smart devices 220. In a possible implementation, the grouping terminal may determine smart devices bound to a same user account as the selected smart devices or determine smart devices located in a same local area network (LAN) as the selected smart devices.

    [0055] The grouping terminal 210 is configured to transmit a transmission power value to each of the selected smart devices. The transmission power values received by the selected smart devices are the same.

    [0056] Optionally, when determining the selected smart devices, the grouping terminal 210 may determine the smart devices 220 bound to the same account as the selected smart devices 220.

    [0057] For example, when living in a smart house, a user may bind smart devices 220 in the house to the same account. In this case, the grouping terminal 210 can acquire the smart devices 220 bound to the account and transmit the transmission power value to the smart devices 220.

    [0058] Optionally, when determining the selected smart devices, the grouping terminal 210 may determine smart devices located in the same local area network (LAN) as the selected smart devices.

    [0059] The LAN referred to herein may be a LAN for a house or for an office or for a company. Obviously, the LAN may be a LAN for a community, and will not be restricted in the present embodiment.

    [0060] Take a LAN for a house as an example. In practical smart home living, a router in the house can acquire identifications of the smart devices 220 connected to the router. In this case, the grouping terminal 210 may request the router for the identifications of the smart devices 220 connected to the router. The router may send the identifications of the smart devices 220 connected to the router to the grouping terminal 210 according to the request. The grouping terminal 210 may determine these smart devices 220 as the selected smart devices 220.

    [0061] The grouping terminal 210 transmits a transmission power value to each of the selected smart devices 220, to instruct the selected smart devices 220 to broadcast signals according to the transmission power value.

    [0062] In practical application, when the grouping terminal 210 transmits the transmission power value, the transmission power value is usually added into a data packet as a parameter. That is, the data packet includes a parameter indicating a transmission power. The grouping terminal 210 transmits the data packet to each of the selected smart devices 220.

    [0063] Each smart device 220 is configured to broadcast a signal based on the transmission power value transmitted by the grouping terminal 210. After receiving signals broadcast by the other smart devices 220 based on the transmission power value transmitted by the grouping terminal 210, the smart device 220 generates pieces of signal strength information respectively based on signal strengths of the received signals (i.e. the signals received by each smart device from the other smart devices 220) and identifications of the smart devices 200 sending the received signals (i.e. the other smart devices 220).

    [0064] When receiving the transmission power transmitted by the grouping terminal 210, each smart device 200 broadcasts a signal based on the transmission power value and receives signals broadcast by the other smart devices 220 based on the transmission power value.

    [0065] Distances among the smart devices 220 may vary, and different obstacles may exist among the smart devices 220. Therefore, when the smart devices 220 broadcast signals to one another, attenuation degrees of the signals vary, and hence signal strengths received by the smart devices 220 also vary.

    [0066] The smart device 200 generates pieces of signal strength information respectively based on signal strengths of the received signals and identifications of transmitters of the signals (i.e. smart devices that transmit the signals) corresponding to the signal strengths, and sends the pieces of signal strength information to the grouping terminal 210.

    [0067] That is, each piece of signal strength information includes at least an identification of a smart device sending the respective signal and a signal strength of this signal which has a high level.

    [0068] Optionally, the piece of signal strength information may further include an identification of the smart device receiving the signal, namely, an identification of the smart device generating the piece of signal strength information.

    [0069] The grouping terminal 210 is further configured to acquire the pieces of signal strength information generated by each smart device 220 and group the selected smart devices 220 based on the acquired pieces of signal strength information.

    [0070] In a possible implementation, the grouping terminal 210 is further configured to: acquire identifications included in the pieces of signal strength information; select signal strength information including different identifications from the pieces of signal strength information; put at least some of the selected pieces of signal strength information into a group based on signal strengths included in the selected pieces of signal strength information, wherein an absolute value of a difference between each other of signal strengths included in the group of pieces of signal strength information being smaller than a predetermined difference threshold; obtain identifications included in the group of pieces of signal strength information, and determine smart devices having the obtained identifications as belonging to a group.

    [0071] In a particular embodiment, in addition to the signal strength of a received signal, each piece of signal strength information further includes identifications of a transmitter and a receiver associated with the signal (i.e. a smart device transmitting the signal and a smart device receiving the signal). Therefore, in a a particular embodiment, for a same piece of signal strength information, the identifications it contains include identifications of the transmitter and the receiver.

    [0072] In practical application, as each smart device may transmit a signal more than once (for example, each smart device may transmit a signal every 5 seconds), signal strength information may be generated many times for at least one signal transmitted between two smart devices. The differences among signal strengths relating to these signal strength information may be very small. In addition, the difference between signal strengths of signals mutually transmitted between two smart devices (e.g., a signal transmitted by a first smart device to a second smart device and a signal transmitted by the second smart device to the first smart device) may also be very small. Therefore, to avoid repeated determinations, only one piece of signal strength information may be selected from pieces of signal strength information related to two given smart devices for subsequent grouping. That is, the pieces of signal strength information including different identifications may be selected first.

    [0073] When selecting the pieces of signal strength information, a piece of signal strength information may be selected if an identification or identifications included in the piece of signal strength information is/are different from identification(s) included in piece(s) of signal strength information that is/are already selected.

    [0074] After selecting the pieces of signal strength information including different identifications, the grouping terminal 210 performs grouping based on signal strengths included in the selected pieces of signal strength information. The grouping may be performed such that an absolute value of a difference between the signal strengths included in each group of pieces of signal strength information is smaller than the predetermined difference threshold.

    [0075] For example, Fig. 2B is a schematic diagram showing how to group smart devices in two rooms according to an embodiment. The first room has smart devices A and B located therein, and the second room has smart devices C and D located therein. The grouping terminal first transmits a transmission power value to the four smart devices respectively, and the four smart devices broadcast signals based on the transmission power value. A signal broadcast by one smart device will be received by the other three smart devices. The signal propagation loss for two smart devices located in the same room is relatively small, and the signal propagation loss for two smart devices located in different rooms is relatively large. Therefore, when the smart device A broadcasts signals, the signal strength of the signal received by the smart device B is relatively large, and the signal strengths of the signals received by the smart devices C and D are relatively small. By using the method according to the invention, the grouping terminal determines that the smart devices A and B belong to a group. And similarly, the grouping terminal determines that the smart devices C and D belong to another group.

    [0076] Hence, in the above example, the smart devices in the same room are grouped into one group, and the smart devices in a different room are grouped into another group. Advantageously, the smart devices in different rooms are grouped into different groups, and the smart devices in the same room are grouped into the same group.

    [0077] In a possible embodiment, different types of smart devices may be located in the same room. In practice, a user may wish to control the same type of smart devices. For example, the user may wish to control all the smart electric lamps in one room, and may not wish to control any other type of smart devices in the room. In this case, the grouping terminal 210 is further configured to: acquire types of smart devices 220 in each group, and group the same type of smart devices 220 in the group into a sub-group, the type being a smart electric lamp type or a smart socket type.

    [0078] That is, the grouping terminal 210 may group smart electric lamps into one sub-group and groups smart sockets into another sub-group, so that each sub-group can be controlled independently.

    [0079] Optionally, when acquiring the types of the smart devices 220, the grouping terminal 210 may distinguish the types of the smart devices 220 based on the identifications of the smart devices 220 included in the pieces of signal strength information.

    [0080] For example, the grouping terminal 210 may group the smart devices 220 based on the signal strengths included in the pieces of signal strength information. As a result of grouping, each group of smart devices 220 may include various types of smart devices 220, such as smart electric lamps, smart sockets and the like. In this case, grouping may be further performed based on the types, so that the smart devices of the same type can be controlled at the same time.

    [0081] To sum up, the smart device grouping system provided by the present embodiment may produce the following advantageous effects. Because the grouping terminal transmits the transmission power value to the smart devices, each of the smart devices can broadcast a signal based on the transmission power value, receive signal(s) broadcast by the other smart device(s) based on the transmission power value, and communicate the received signal strength(s) to the grouping terminal, which groups the smart devices based on the signal strengths. Because the grouping terminal can control each of the smart devices to broadcast a signal based on the same power (i.e. the transmission power value) and to collect power strength(s) of signal(s) sent by the other smart device(s) and then the grouping terminal can perform automatic grouping based on the power strengths, the technical problem of low efficiency in the prior arts caused by having to select smart devices one by one before controlling the smart devices can be solved, and the effect of automatic grouping and collectively controlling the smart devices can be achieved.

    [0082] For example, because the signal propagation loss in the same room is relatively small and the signal propagation loss between different rooms is relatively large, it can be ensured that, by grouping senders and receivers associated with signal strengths differing from each other by less than a predetermined difference threshold into the same group, the smart devices in the same room can be successfully grouped into the same group.

    [0083] Because multiple types of smart devices may be located in the same room, by grouping based on the types, it is more convenient for a user to control and maintain the smart devices in the same room. For example, the smart electric lamps in the same room may be turned off at the same time, or the smart sockets in the same room may be powered on at the same time.

    [0084] Fig. 3 is a flow chart showing a smart device grouping method according to an embodiment. As shown in Fig. 3, the smart device grouping method is applied in the grouping terminal 120 in the application environment shown in Fig. 1, and may comprise the following steps.

    [0085] In step 301, a transmission power value is transmitted to each of selected smart devices.

    [0086] In step 302, pieces of signal strength information sent by each smart device are acquired, wherein said pieces of signal strength information are generated by the smart device after the smart device receives signals broadcast by the other one or more of the smart devices based on the transmission power value, respectively based on signal strengths of the received signals and identifications of the smart devices sending the received signals.

    [0087] In step 303, the selected smart devices are grouped according to the pieces of signal strength information sent by said each smart device.

    [0088] To sum up, the smart device grouping method provided by the present embodiment may produce the following advantageous effects. Because the grouping terminal transmits the transmission power value to the smart devices, each of the smart devices can broadcast a signal based on the transmission power value, receive signal(s) broadcast by the other smart device(s) based on the transmission power value, and feed received signal strength(s) back to the grouping terminal, which groups the smart devices based on the signal strengths. Because the grouping terminal can control each of the smart devices to broadcast a signal based on the same power and to collect power strength(s) of signal(s) sent by the other smart device(s) and then the grouping terminal can perform automatic grouping based on the power strengths, the technical problem of low efficiency in the prior arts caused by having to select smart devices one by one before controlling the same can be solved, and the effect of automatic grouping and collectively controlling the smart devices can be achieved.

    [0089] Fig. 4 is a flow chart showing a smart device grouping method according to another embodiment. As shown in Fig. 4, the smart device grouping method is applied in the grouping terminal 120 in the application environment shown in Fig. 1, and may comprise the following steps.

    [0090] In step 401, the grouping terminal transmits a transmission power value to each of selected smart devices.

    [0091] The grouping terminal may be a device having a computing function, such as a mobile phone, a server, a tablet computer, a computer message transceiving device or the like.

    [0092] In a possible implementation, the grouping terminal may determine smart devices bound to a same user account as the selected smart devices or determine smart devices located in a same local area network (LAN) as the selected smart devices.

    [0093] In step 402, the grouping terminal acquires pieces of signal strength information sent by the selected smart devices.

    [0094] The pieces of signal strength information are generated by each smart device after the smart device receives signals broadcast by the other one or more of the smart devices based on the transmission power value, respectively based on signal strengths of the received signals and identifications of the smart devices sending the received signals.

    [0095] In step 403, the grouping terminal acquires identifications included in the pieces of signal strength information sent by each smart device.

    [0096] In step 404, the grouping terminal selects pieces of signal strength information including different identifications from the pieces of signal strength information.

    [0097] In an example, in addition to the signal strength of a received signal, each piece of signal strength information further includes identifications of a transmitter and a receiver that are associated with the signal. Therefore, in this example, for the same piece of signal strength information, the identifications it contains include identifications of the transmitter and the receiver.

    [0098] In practical application, as each smart device may transmit a signal more than once (for example, each smart device may transmit a signal every 5 seconds), signal strength information may be generated many times for at least one signal transmitted between two smart devices, and the differences among signal strengths relating to these signal strength information may be very small. Therefore, to avoid repeated determinations, only one piece of signal strength information may be selected from pieces of signal strength information related to two given smart devices for subsequent grouping. That is, the pieces of signal strength information including different identifications may be selected first.

    [0099] When selecting some of the pieces of signal strength information which include different identifications, a piece of signal strength information may be selected only if the identification(s) included in the piece of signal strength information is/are different from identification(s) included in piece(s) of signal strength information that is/are already selected.

    [0100] For example, smart devices A, B and C broadcast signals. When receiving a signal broadcast by the smart device B, the smart device A generates first signal strength information based on a signal strength of the signal; when receiving a signal broadcast by the smart device C, the smart device A generates second signal strength information based on a signal strength of the signal. When receiving a signal broadcast by the smart device A, the smart device B generates third signal strength information based on a signal strength of the signal; when receiving a signal broadcast by the smart device C, the smart device B generates fourth signal strength information based on a signal strength of the signal. When receiving a signal broadcast by the smart device A, the smart device C generates fifth signal strength information based on a signal strength of the signal; when receiving a signal broadcast by the smart device B, the smart device C generates sixth signal strength information based on a signal strength of the signal. Please refer to Table 1.
    Table 1
    Signal strength informationIdentification of the transmitterIdentification of the receiverSignal strength
    First signal strength information B A -30dbm
    Second signal strength information C A -32dbm
    Third signal strength information A B -30dbm
    Fourth signal strength information C B -38dbm
    Fifth signal strength information A C -32dbm
    Sixth signal strength information B C -38dbm


    [0101] The grouping terminal selects pieces of signal strength information which include different identifications. Identifications included in both the first and the third signal strength information are A and B. Identifications included in both the second and the fifth signal strength information are A and C. Identifications included in both the fourth and the sixth signal strength information are B and C. The grouping terminal selects one of the first and the third signal strength information, one of the second and the fifth signal strength information, and one of the fourth and the sixth signal strength information based on different identifications included in these pieces of signal strength information.

    [0102] It should be noted that, for the convenience of illustration, the above identifications for the smart devices are represented by letters. In practical implementation, the identification of a smart device may be represented by letters, symbols and numbers or any combination thereof, and will not be restricted in the present invention.

    [0103] In step 405, the grouping terminal puts some of the selected pieces of signal strength information into a group based on signal strengths included in the selected pieces of signal strength information, wherein an absolute value of a difference between each other of signal strengths included in the group of pieces of signal strength information being smaller than a predetermined difference threshold.

    [0104] In a possible implementation, the predetermined difference threshold may be recommended by the system comprising the grouping terminal or may be set and modified by users.

    [0105] By way of example, the predetermined difference threshold may be 5dbm. Referring again to Table 1, the grouping terminal puts the first and the second signal strength information into a group based on the signal strengths included in these signal strength information, i.e. because an absolute value of a difference (i.e. 2dbm) between the signal strengths (i.e. -30dbm and -32dbm) is smaller than the predetermined difference threshold (i.e. 5dbm).

    [0106] In step 406, the grouping terminal obtains identifications included in the group of pieces of signal strength information, and determines smart devices having the obtained identifications into a group.

    [0107] Referring again to Table 1, the grouping terminal obtains identifications included in the first and the second signal strength information (that is, A, B and C), and groups the smart devices A, B and C into one group.

    [0108] In a possible implementation, each of the resulting groups may be further divided. The dividing method may comprise the following steps.

    [0109] In step 407, the grouping terminal acquires types of smart devices in the group, the types including a smart electric lamp type or a smart socket type.

    [0110] In step 408, the grouping terminal groups smart devices of a same type in the group into a sub-group.

    [0111] In a possible implementation, the grouping terminal receives a control instruction for controlling the respective smart devices in a designated group, and sends the control instruction to the smart devices in the designated group. The smart devices receive the control instruction and perform a corresponding operation based on the control instruction. The corresponding operation may be starting, ending or adjusting a corresponding operation mode.

    [0112] To sum up, the smart device grouping method provided by the present embodiment may produce the following advantageous effects. Because the grouping terminal transmits the transmission power value to the smart devices, each of the smart devices can broadcast a signal based on the transmission power value, receive signal(s) broadcast by the other smart device(s) based on the transmission power value, and feed received signal strength(s) back to the grouping terminal, which groups the smart devices based on the signal strengths. Because the grouping terminal can control each of the smart devices to broadcast a signal based on the same power and to collect power strength(s) of signal(s) sent by the other smart device(s) and then the grouping terminal can perform automatic grouping based on the power strengths, the technical problem of low efficiency in the prior arts caused by having to select smart devices one by one before controlling the same can be solved, and the effect of automatic grouping and collectively controlling the smart devices can be achieved.

    [0113] Because the signal propagation loss in the same room is relatively small and the signal propagation loss between different rooms is relatively large, it can be ensured that, by grouping senders and receivers associated with signal strengths differing from each other by less than a predetermined difference threshold into the same group, the smart devices in the same room can be successfully grouped into the same group.

    [0114] Because multiple types of smart devices may be located in the same room, by grouping based on the types, it is more convenient for a user to control and maintain the smart devices in the same room. For example, the smart electric lamps in the same room may be turned off at the same time, or the smart sockets in the same room may be powered on at the same time.

    [0115] The selected smart devices can be determined automatically based on a user account or a LAN, so that the user is saved from adding smart devices by himself/herself tediously and accuracy of acquiring the selected smart devices can be ensured.

    [0116] The smart devices in the designated group can be controlled based on a control instruction for the group, thereby improving the control efficiency.

    [0117] Fig. 5 is a flow chart showing a smart device grouping method according to yet another embodiment. As shown in Fig. 5, the smart device grouping method is applied in a smart device 140 in the application environment shown in Fig. 1, and may comprise the following steps.

    [0118] In step 501, signals broadcast by one or more other smart devices are received, the signals being sent by the smart devices according to a transmission power value after the smart devices receive the transmission power value.

    [0119] In step 502, for a signal received from each of the smart devices, a piece of signal strength information is generated based on a received signal strength of the signal and an identification of the smart device sending the signal.

    [0120] In step 503, the piece of signal strength information generated for each of the smart devices is sent to a grouping terminal, to trigger the grouping terminal to group, based on the pieces of signal strength information acquired by the grouping terminal, smart devices generating respective sets of pieces of signal strength information.

    [0121] To sum up, the smart device grouping method provided by the present embodiment may produce the following advantageous effects. Because the grouping terminal transmits the transmission power value to the smart devices, each of the smart devices can broadcast a signal based on the transmission power value, receive signal(s) broadcast by the other smart device(s) based on the transmission power value, and feed received signal strength(s) back to the grouping terminal, which groups the smart devices based on the signal strengths. Because the grouping terminal can control each of the smart devices to broadcast a signal based on the same power and to collect power strength(s) of signal(s) sent by the other smart device(s) and then the grouping terminal can perform automatic grouping based on the power strengths, the technical problem of low efficiency in the prior arts caused by having to select smart devices one by one before controlling the smart devices can be solved, and the effect of automatic grouping and collectively controlling the smart devices can be achieved.

    [0122] Fig. 6 is a flow chart showing a smart device grouping method according to yet another embodiment. As shown in Fig. 6, the smart device grouping method is applied in a smart device 140 in the application environment shown in Fig. 1, and may comprise the following steps.

    [0123] In step 601, a smart device receives a transmission power value transmitted by a grouping terminal.

    [0124] The smart device may be a device having a radio signal transmitting and receiving function, such as a smart electric lamp, a smart socket, a smart TV, a smart air conditioner or the like.

    [0125] In step 602, the smart device broadcasts a signal according to the transmission power value, the signal carrying an identification of the smart device broadcasting the signal.

    [0126] After receiving the transmission power value transmitted by the grouping terminal, the smart device can broadcast a signal according to the transmission power value.

    [0127] In practical implementation, to avoid signal transmission failure or severe interference by other signals which in turn causes the grouping terminal to be unable to perform grouping successfully, the smart device may broadcast a signal according to the transmission power several times.

    [0128] For example, the smart device may broadcast a signal according to the transmission power at a predetermined time interval, which may be designated by the grouping terminal. For example, the grouping terminal may add the transmission power value and the designated predetermined time interval into the same data packet, and transmit the data packet to each selected smart device. In this way, after receiving the data packet, the smart device may broadcast a signal according to the transmission power at the designated predetermined time interval.

    [0129] Obviously, the smart device may broadcast a predetermined number of signals. The predetermined number may be designated by the grouping terminal. For example, the grouping terminal may add the transmission power and the designated predetermined number into the same data packet, and transmit the data packet to each selected smart device. In this way, after receiving the data packet, the smart device may broadcast the designated predetermined number of signals according to the transmission power.

    [0130] In step 603, the smart device receives signals broadcast by one or more other smart devices, the signals being transmitted by the smart devices based on the transmission power value after the smart devices receive the transmission power value.

    [0131] In step 604, for a signal sent by each of the smart devices, the smart device generates a piece of signal strength information based on a received signal strength of the signal and an identification of the smart device sending the signal.

    [0132] Optionally, the generated piece of signal strength information may further comprise an identification of the smart device which generates the piece of signal strength information, namely, an identification of the smart device which receives the signal.

    [0133] In step 605, the smart device sends the piece of signal strength information generated for each of the smart devices to the grouping terminal, to trigger the grouping terminal to group, based on the pieces of signal strength information acquired by the grouping terminal, smart devices generating respective sets of pieces of signal strength information.

    [0134] For details of the process via which the grouping terminal groups smart devices based on acquired pieces of signal strength information, reference can be made to the above-described smart device grouping system. Description thereof will not be repeated herein.

    [0135] To sum up, the smart device grouping method provided by the present embodiment may produce the following advantageous effects. Because the grouping terminal transmits the transmission power value to the smart devices, each of the smart devices can broadcast a signal based on the transmission power value, receive signal(s) broadcast by the other smart device(s) based on the transmission power value, and feed received signal strength(s) back to the grouping terminal, which groups the smart devices based on the signal strengths. Because the grouping terminal can control each of the smart devices to broadcast a signal based on the same power and to collect power strength(s) of signal(s) sent by the other smart device(s) and then the grouping terminal can perform automatic grouping based on the power strengths, the technical problem of low efficiency in the prior arts caused by having to select smart devices one by one before controlling the smart devices can be solved, and the effect of automatic grouping and collectively controlling the smart devices can be achieved.

    [0136] The followings describe the apparatus embodiments of the present invention, which may be used to perform the method embodiments of the present invention. For the details not disclosed in the apparatus embodiments of the present invention, reference can be made to the method embodiments of the present invention.

    [0137] Fig. 7 is a block diagram showing a smart device grouping apparatus according to an embodiment. The smart device grouping apparatus may be realized as the grouping terminal 120 in the above application environment or a part of it in the form of software, hardware or a combination thereof. As shown in Fig. 7, the smart device grouping apparatus comprises a power value transmitting module 710, an acquiring module 720 and a grouping module 730.

    [0138] The power value transmitting module 710 is configured to transmit a transmission power value to each of selected smart devices.

    [0139] The acquiring module 720 is configured to acquire pieces of signal strength information fed back by said each smart device, wherein said pieces of signal strength information are generated by the smart device after the smart device receives signals broadcast by the other one or more of the smart devices based on the transmission power value transmitted by the power value transmitting module 710, respectively based on signal strengths of the received signals and identifications of the smart devices sending the received signals.

    [0140] The grouping module 730 is configured to group the selected smart devices based on the pieces of signal strength information sent by each smart device and acquired by the acquiring module 720.

    [0141] To sum up, the smart device grouping apparatus provided by the present embodiment may produce the following advantageous effects. Because the grouping terminal transmits the transmission power value to the smart devices, each of the smart devices can broadcast a signal based on the transmission power value, receive signal(s) broadcast by the other smart device(s) based on the transmission power value, and feed received signal strength(s) back to the grouping terminal, which groups the smart devices based on the signal strengths. Because the grouping terminal can control each of the smart devices to broadcast a signal based on the same power and to collect power strength(s) of signal(s) sent by the other smart device(s) and then the grouping terminal can perform automatic grouping based on the power strengths, the technical problem of low efficiency in the prior arts caused by having to select smart devices one by one before controlling the smart devices can be solved, and the effect of automatic grouping and collectively controlling the smart devices can be achieved.

    [0142] Fig. 8 is a block diagram showing a smart device grouping apparatus according to another embodiment. The smart device grouping apparatus may be realized as the grouping terminal 120 in the above application environment or a part of it in the form of software, hardware or a combination thereof. As shown in Fig. 8, the smart device grouping apparatus comprises a power value transmitting module 810, an acquiring module 820 and a grouping module 830.

    [0143] The power value transmitting module 810 is configured to transmit a transmission power to each of selected smart devices.

    [0144] The grouping terminal transmits a transmission power value to each of the selected smart devices, to instruct the selected smart devices to broadcast signals according to the transmission power value.

    [0145] In practical application, when the grouping terminal transmits the transmission power value, the transmission power value is usually added into a data packet as a parameter. That is, the data packet includes a parameter indicating a transmission power. The grouping terminal transmits the data packet to each of the selected smart devices.

    [0146] The acquiring module 820 is configured to acquire pieces of signal strength information fed back by said each smart device, wherein said pieces of signal strength information are generated by the smart device after the smart device receives signals broadcast by the other one or more of the smart devices based on the transmission power value transmitted by the power value transmitting module 810, respectively based on signal strengths of the received signals and identifications of the smart devices sending the received signals.

    [0147] In a possible implementation, each piece of signal strength information acquired by the acquiring module 820 further comprises an identification of the smart device which generates the piece of signal strength information.

    [0148] The grouping module 830 is configured to group the selected smart devices according to the pieces of signal strength information fed back by said each smart device and acquired by the acquiring module 820.

    [0149] In a possible implementation, the grouping module 830 may comprise an identification acquiring sub-module 830a, a selecting sub-module 830b, a grouping sub-module 830c and an identification grouping sub-module 830d.

    [0150] The identification acquiring sub-module 830a is configured to acquire identifications included in the pieces of signal strength information and acquired by the acquiring module 820.

    [0151] Identifications included in each piece of signal strength information generally include an identification of the smart device sending the corresponding signal and an identification of the smart device receiving the signal.

    [0152] The selecting sub-module 830b is configured to select some of the pieces of signal strength information, so that the selected pieces of signal strength information include different identifications acquired by the acquiring sub-module 830a.

    [0153] In practical application, as each smart device may transmit a signal more than one times (for example, each smart device may transmit a signal every 5 seconds), signal strength information may be generated many times for at least one signal transmitted between two smart devices, and the difference among signal strengths relating to these signal strength information may be very small. In addition, the difference between signal strengths of signals mutually transmitted between two smart devices (e.g., a signal transmitted by a first smart device to a second smart device and a signal transmitted by the second smart device to the first smart device) may be very small. Therefore, to avoid repeated determinations, only one piece of signal strength information may be selected from pieces of signal strength information related to two smart devices for subsequent grouping. That is, the pieces of signal strength information including different identifications may be selected first.

    [0154] When selecting some of the pieces of signal strength information which include different identifications, a piece of signal strength information may be selected as long as one identification included in the piece of signal strength information is different from identification(s) included in existing piece(s) of signal strength information.

    [0155] The grouping sub-module 830c is configured to group the selected pieces of signal strength information selected by the selecting sub-module 830b based on signal strengths included in the selected pieces of signal strength information, an absolute value of a difference between the signal strengths included in each group of pieces of signal strength information being smaller than a predetermined difference threshold.

    [0156] When different identifications are included, the difference between pieces of signal strength information is usually large, but the difference between signal strengths of signals transmitted in the same room is still smaller than that between signal strengths of signals transmitted between different rooms. Therefore, pieces of signal strength information including signal strengths whose absolute difference is smaller than the predetermined difference threshold can be grouped into one group.

    [0157] The identification grouping sub-module 830d is configured to acquire identifications included in each group of pieces of signal strength information grouped by the grouping sub-module 830c and divide the smart devices having the identifications into one group.

    [0158] In a possible implementation, the apparatus may further comprise a type acquiring sub-module 830e and a type grouping sub-module 830f.

    [0159] The type acquiring sub-module 830e is configured to acquire types of smart devices in the group grouped by the identification grouping sub-module 830d, the types including a smart electric lamp type and a smart socket type.

    [0160] The type grouping sub-module 830f is configured to group the same type of smart devices in the group into a sub-group based on the types of smart devices in the group acquired by the type acquiring sub-module 830e.

    [0161] In a possible implementation, different types of smart devices may be located in the same room. In practice, a user may only need to control the same type of smart devices. For example, the user may only need to control all the smart electric lamps in one room, and may not need to control any other type of smart devices. In this case, the smart devices in one group may be further divided based on their types.

    [0162] For example, the grouping terminal may group smart electric lamps into one sub-group and groups smart sockets into another sub-group based on the types of the smart devices, so that each sub-group can be controlled independently.

    [0163] Optionally, the apparatus may further comprise a first determining module 840.

    [0164] The first determining module 840 is configured to determine smart devices bound to the same user account as the selected smart devices.

    [0165] For example, when living in a smart house, a user may bind smart devices in the house to the same account. In this case, the grouping terminal can acquire the smart devices bound to the account, and transmit the transmission power value to these smart devices.

    [0166] Optionally, the apparatus may further comprise a second determining module 850.

    [0167] The second determining module 850 is configured to determine smart devices located in the same local area network (LAN) as the selected smart devices.

    [0168] The LAN referred to herein may be a LAN for a house or for an office or for a company. Obviously, the LAN may be a LAN for a community, and will not be restricted in the present embodiment.

    [0169] Take a LAN for a house as an example. In practical smart home living, a router in the house can acquire the identifications of the smart devices connected to the router. In this case, the grouping terminal may request the router for the identifications of the smart devices connected to the router. The router may feed the identifications of the smart devices connected to the router back to the grouping terminal according to the request. The grouping terminal may determine these smart devices as the selected smart devices.

    [0170] In a possible implementation, the apparatus may further comprise an instruction receiving module 860 and an instruction sending module 870.

    [0171] The instruction receiving module 860 is configured to receive a control instruction for controlling the smart devices in a designated group.

    [0172] The control instruction mentioned here refers to a control instruction set based on the common features of the smart devices in one group, and may be a turning-off instruction, a turning-on instruction or a power-off instruction.

    [0173] The instruction sending module 870 is configured to send the control instruction to each smart device in the designated group.

    [0174] To sum up, the smart device grouping apparatus provided by the present embodiment may produce the following advantageous effects. Because the grouping terminal transmits the transmission power value to the smart devices, each of the smart devices can broadcast a signal based on the transmission power value, receive signal(s) broadcast by the other smart device(s) based on the transmission power value, and feed received signal strength(s) back to the grouping terminal, which groups the smart devices based on the signal strengths. Because the grouping terminal can control each of the smart devices to broadcast a signal based on the same power and to collect power strength(s) of signal(s) sent by the other smart device(s) and then the grouping terminal can perform automatic grouping based on the power strengths, the technical problem of low efficiency in the prior arts caused by having to select smart devices one by one before controlling the smart devices can be solved, and the effect of automatic grouping and collectively controlling the smart devices can be achieved.

    [0175] Because the signal propagation loss in the same room is relatively small and the signal propagation loss between different rooms is relatively large, it can be ensured that, by grouping senders and receivers associated with signal strengths differing from each other by less than a predetermined difference threshold into the same group, the smart devices in the same room can be successfully grouped into the same group.

    [0176] Because multiple types of smart devices may be located in the same room, by grouping based on the types, it is more convenient for a user to control and maintain the smart devices in the same room. For example, the smart electric lamps in the same room may be turned off at the same time, or the smart sockets in the same room may be powered on at the same time.

    [0177] The selected smart devices can be determined automatically based on a user account or a LAN, so that the user is saved from adding smart devices by himself/herself tediously and accuracy of acquiring the selected smart devices can be ensured.

    [0178] The smart devices in the designated group can be controlled based on a control instruction for the group, thereby improving the control efficiency.

    [0179] Fig. 9 is a block diagram showing a smart device grouping apparatus according to yet another embodiment. The smart device grouping apparatus may be realized as the smart device 140 in the above application environment or a part of it in the form of software, hardware or a combination thereof. As shown in Fig. 9, the smart device grouping apparatus comprises a receiving module 910, a generating module 920 and a sending module 930.

    [0180] The receiving module 910 is configured to receive signals broadcast by one or more other smart devices, the signals being sent by the smart devices according to a transmission power value after the smart devices receive the transmission power value.

    [0181] The generating module 920 is configured to, for a signal sent by each of the smart devices, generate a piece of signal strength information based on a received signal strength of the signal and an identification of the smart device sending the signal.

    [0182] The sending module 930 is configured to send the piece of signal strength information generated by the generating module for each of the smart devices to a grouping terminal, to trigger the grouping terminal to group, based on the pieces of signal strength information acquired by the grouping terminal, smart devices generating respective sets of pieces of signal strength information.

    [0183] To sum up, the smart device grouping apparatus provided by the present embodiment may produce the following advantageous effects. Because the grouping terminal transmits the transmission power value to the smart devices, each of the smart devices can broadcast a signal based on the transmission power value, receive signal(s) broadcast by the other smart device(s) based on the transmission power value, and feed received signal strength(s) back to the grouping terminal, which groups the smart devices based on the signal strengths. Because the grouping terminal can control each of the smart devices to broadcast a signal based on the same power and to collect power strength(s) of signal(s) sent by the other smart device(s) and then the grouping terminal can perform automatic grouping based on the power strengths, the technical problem of low efficiency in the prior arts caused by having to select smart devices one by one before controlling the smart devices can be solved, and the effect of automatic grouping and collectively controlling the smart devices can be achieved.

    [0184] Fig. 10 is a block diagram showing a smart device grouping apparatus according to yet another embodiment. The smart device grouping apparatus may be realized as the smart device 140 in the above application environment or a part of it in the form of software, hardware or a combination thereof. As shown in Fig. 10, the smart device grouping apparatus comprises a receiving module 1010, a generating module 1020 and a sending module 1030.

    [0185] The receiving module 1010 is configured to receive signals broadcast by one or more other smart devices, the signal being transmitted by the smart devices based on a transmission power value after the smart devices receive the transmission power value.

    [0186] The generating module 1020 is configured to, for a signal sent by each of the smart devices, generate a piece of signal strength information based on a received signal strength of the signal and an identification of the smart device sending the signal.

    [0187] The sending module 1030 is configured to send the piece of signal strength information generated for each of the smart devices to a grouping terminal, to trigger the grouping terminal to group, based on the pieces of signal strength information acquired by the grouping terminal, smart devices generating respective sets of pieces of signal strength information.

    [0188] In a possible implementation, the apparatus may further comprise a power value receiving module 1040 and a broadcasting module 1050.

    [0189] The power value receiving module 1040 is configured to receive a transmission power value transmitted by the grouping terminal.

    [0190] The broadcasting module 1050 is configured to broadcast a signal based on the transmission power value received by the power value receiving module 1040, the signal carrying an identification of a smart device broadcasting the signal.

    [0191] After receiving the transmission power value transmitted by the grouping terminal, the smart device may broadcast a signal according to the transmission power value.

    [0192] In practical implementation, to avoid signal transmission failure or severe interference by other signals which in turn causes the grouping terminal to be unable to perform grouping successfully, the smart device may broadcast a signal according to the transmission power value several times.

    [0193] For example, the smart device may broadcast a signal according to the transmission power value at a predetermined time interval, which may be designated by the grouping terminal. For example, the grouping terminal may add the transmission power value and the designated predetermined time interval into the same data packet, and transmit the data packet to each selected smart device. In this way, after receiving the data packet, the smart device may broadcast a signal according to the transmission power value at the designated predetermined time interval.

    [0194] Obviously, the smart device may broadcast a predetermined number of signals. The predetermined number may be designated by the grouping terminal. For example, the grouping terminal may add the transmission power value and the designated predetermined number into the same data packet, and transmit the data packet to each selected smart device. In this way, after receiving the data packet, the smart device may broadcast the designated predetermined number of signals according to the transmission power value.

    [0195] To sum up, the smart device grouping apparatus provided by the present embodiment may produce the following advantageous effects. The smart device grouping system provided by the present embodiment may produce the following advantageous effects. Because the grouping terminal transmits the transmission power value to the smart devices, each of the smart devices can broadcast a signal based on the transmission power value, receive signal(s) broadcast by the other smart device(s) based on the transmission power value, and feed received signal strength(s) back to the grouping terminal, which groups the smart devices based on the signal strengths. Because the grouping terminal can control each of the smart devices to broadcast a signal based on the same power and to collect power strength(s) of signal(s) sent by the other smart device(s) and then the grouping terminal can perform automatic grouping based on the power strengths, the technical problem of low efficiency in the prior arts caused by having to select smart devices one by one before controlling the smart devices can be solved, and the effect of automatic grouping and collectively controlling the smart devices can be achieved.

    [0196] With respect to the apparatuses in the above embodiments, the specific manners for performing operations for individual modules therein have been described in detail in the embodiments regarding the related methods, and will not be elaborated herein.

    [0197] An embodiment of the present invention provides a smart device grouping apparatus, which can perform the smart device grouping method provided by the embodiments of the present invention and which comprises a processor; and a memory storing instructions executable by the processor. The processor is configured to: transmit a transmission power value to each of selected smart devices; acquire pieces of signal strength information fed back by said each smart device, wherein said pieces of signal strength information are generated by the smart device after the smart device receives signals broadcast by the other one or more of the smart devices based on the transmission power value, respectively based on signal strengths of the received signals and identifications of the smart devices sending the received signals; and group the selected smart devices according to the pieces of signal strength information fed back by said each smart device.

    [0198] Another embodiment of the present invention provides a smart device grouping apparatus, which can perform the smart device grouping method provided by the embodiments of the present invention and which comprises a processor; and a memory storing instructions executable by the processor. The processor is configured to: receive signals broadcast by one or more other smart devices, the signals being sent by the smart devices according to a transmission power value after the smart devices receive the transmission power value; for a signal sent by each of the smart devices, generate a piece of signal strength information based on a received signal strength of the signal and an identification of the smart device sending the signal; and send the piece of signal strength information generated for each of the smart devices to a grouping terminal, to trigger the grouping terminal to group, based on the pieces of signal strength information acquired by the grouping terminal, smart devices generating respective sets of pieces of signal strength information.

    [0199] Fig. 11 is a block diagram showing a smart device grouping apparatus 1100 according to a further embodiment. For example, the apparatus 1100 may be a mobile phone, a server, a tablet, a computer, a messaging device or the like.

    [0200] Referring to Fig. 11, the apparatus 1100 may include one or more of the following components: a processing component 1102, a memory 1104, a power component 1106, a multimedia component 1108, an audio component 1110, an input/output (I/O) interface 1112, a sensor component 1114, and a communication component 1116.

    [0201] The processing component 1102 typically controls overall operations of the apparatus 1100, such as the operations associated with display, telephone calls, data communications, camera operations, and recording operations. The processing component 1102 may include one or more processors 1120 to execute instructions to perform all or part of the steps in the above described methods performed by the grouping terminal. Moreover, the processing component 1102 may include one or more modules which facilitate the interaction between the processing component 1102 and other components. For instance, the processing component 1102 may include a multimedia module to facilitate the interaction between the multimedia component 1108 and the processing component 1102.

    [0202] The memory 1104 is configured to store various types of data to support the operation of the apparatus 1100. Examples of such data include instructions for any applications or methods operated on the apparatus 1100, contact data, phonebook data, messages, pictures, video, etc. The memory 1104 may be implemented using any type of volatile or non-volatile memory devices, or a combination thereof, such as a static random access memory (SRAM), an electrically erasable programmable read-only memory (EEPROM), an erasable programmable read-only memory (EPROM), a programmable read-only memory (PROM), a read-only memory (ROM), a magnetic memory, a flash memory, a magnetic or optical disk.

    [0203] The power component 1106 provides power to various components of the apparatus 1100. The power component 1106 may include a power management system, one or more power sources, and any other components associated with the generation, management, and distribution of power in the apparatus 1100.

    [0204] The multimedia component 1108 includes a screen providing an output interface between the apparatus 1100 and the user. In some embodiments, the screen may include a liquid crystal display (LCD) and a touch panel (TP). If the screen includes the touch panel, the screen may be implemented as a touch screen to receive input signals from the user. The touch panel includes one or more touch sensors to sense touches, swipes, and gestures on the touch panel. The touch sensors may not only sense a boundary of a touch or swipe action, but also sense a period of time and a pressure associated with the touch or swipe action. In some embodiments, the multimedia component 1808 includes a front camera and/or a rear camera. The front camera and the rear camera may receive an external multimedia datum while the apparatus 1100 is in an operation mode, such as a photographing mode or a video mode. Each of the front camera and the rear camera may be a fixed optical lens system or have focus and optical zoom capability.

    [0205] The audio component 1110 is configured to output and/or input audio signals. For example, the audio component 1110includesa microphone ("MIC") configured to receive an external audio signal when the apparatus 1100 is in an operation mode, such as a call mode, a recording mode, and a voice recognition mode. The received audio signal may be further stored in the memory 1104 or transmitted via the communication component 1116. In some embodiments, the audio component 1110 further includes a speaker to output audio signals.

    [0206] The I/O interface 1112 provides an interface between the processing component 1102 and peripheral interface modules, such as a keyboard, a click wheel, buttons, and the like. The buttons may include, but are not limited to, a home button, a volume button, a starting button, and a locking button.

    [0207] The sensor component 1114 includes one or more sensors to provide status assessments of various aspects of the apparatus 1100. For instance, the sensor component 1114 may detect an open/closed status of the apparatus 1100, relative positioning of components, e.g., the display and the keypad, of the apparatus 1100, a change in position of the apparatus 1100 or a component of the apparatus 1100, a presence or absence of user contact with the apparatus 1100, an orientation or an acceleration/deceleration of the apparatus 1100, and a change in temperature of the apparatus 1100. The sensor component 1114 may include a proximity sensor configured to detect the presence of nearby objects without any physical contact. The sensor component 1114 may also include a light sensor, such as a CMOS or CCD image sensor, for use in imaging applications. In some embodiments, the sensor component 1114 may also include an accelerometer sensor, a gyroscope sensor, a magnetic sensor, a pressure sensor, or a temperature sensor.

    [0208] The communication component 1116 is configured to facilitate communication, wired or wirelessly, between the apparatus 1100 and other devices. The apparatus 1100 can access a wireless network based on a communication standard, such as WiFi, 2G, or 3G, or a combination thereof. In one exemplary embodiment, the communication component 1116receives a broadcast signal or broadcast associated information from an external broadcast management system via a broadcast channel. In one exemplary embodiment, the communication component 1116 further includes a near field communication (NFC) module to facilitate short-range communications. For example, the NFC module may be implemented based on a radio frequency identification (RFID) technology, an infrared data association (IrDA) technology, an ultra-wideband (UWB) technology, a Bluetooth (BT) technology, and other technologies.

    [0209] In exemplary embodiments, the apparatus 1100 may be implemented with one or more application specific integrated circuits (ASICs), digital signal processors (DSPs), digital signal processing devices (DSPDs), programmable logic devices (PLDs), field programmable gate arrays (FPGAs), controllers, micro-controllers, microprocessors, or other electronic components, for performing the above described methods.

    [0210] In an embodiment, there is also provided a non-transitory computer-readable storage medium including instructions, such as included in the memory 1104, executable by the processor 1120 in the apparatus 1100, for performing the above-described methods. For example, the non-transitorycomputer-readable storage medium may be a ROM, a RAM, a CD-ROM, a magnetic tape, a floppy disc, an optical data storage device, and the like.

    [0211] Fig. 12 is a block diagram showing a smart device grouping apparatus according to yet a further embodiment. For example, the smart device grouping apparatus 1200 may be provided as a smart electric lamp, a smart socket, a smart TV, a smart air conditioner or the like. As shown in Fig. 12, the smart device grouping apparatus 1200 includes a processing component 1222 which further includes one or more processors, and memory resources represented by a memory 1232 for storing instructions executable by the processing component 1222 such as applications. The applications stored in the memory 1232 may include one or more modules, each corresponding to a set of instructions. The processing component 1222 is configured to execute instructions so as to perform the above smart device grouping method executed by smart device.

    [0212] The apparatus 1200 may also include a power source assembly 1226 which is configured to execute power management for the apparatus 1200, a wired or wireless network interface 1250 which is configured to connect the apparatus 1200 to a network, and an input/output (I/O) interface 1258. The apparatus 1200 can operate the operation system stored in the memory 1232, for example, Windows ServerTM, Mac OS XTM, UnixTM, LinuxTM, Free BSDTM or the like.

    [0213] Other embodiments of the invention will be apparent to those skilled in the art from consideration of the specification and practice of the invention disclosed here. This application is intended to cover any variations, uses, or adaptations of the invention following the general principles thereof and including such departures from the present invention as come within known or customary practice in the art. It is intended that the specification and examples be considered as exemplary only, with the scope of the invention as defined by the appended claims.

    [0214] It will be appreciated that the present invention is not limited to the exact construction that has been described above and illustrated in the accompanying drawings, and that various modifications and changes can be made without departing from the scope thereof. It is intended that the scope of the invention only be limited by the appended claims.


    Claims

    1. A smart device grouping system, comprising: a grouping terminal (120) and at least two selected smart devices (140),
    characterized in that the grouping terminal (120) is configured to transmit a transmission power value to each of the selected smart devices;
    each of the smart devices (140) is configured to:

    broadcast a signal based on the transmission power value, and

    after receiving signals broadcast by the other one or more of the smart devices based on the transmission power value, generate pieces of signal strength information respectively based on signal strengths of the received signals and identifications of the smart devices sending the received signals; and

    the grouping terminal (120) is further configured to acquire the pieces of signal strength information generated by each smart device and group the selected smart devices based on the pieces of signal strength information.
     
    2. The system of claim 1, wherein each piece of signal strength information further includes an identification of the smart device which generates the piece of signal strength information,
    and
    the grouping terminal (120) is further configured to: acquire identifications included in the pieces of signal strength information; select pieces of signal strength information including different identifications from the pieces of signal strength information; put at least some of the selected pieces of signal strength information into a group based on signal strengths included in the selected pieces of signal strength information, wherein an absolute value of a difference between each other of signal strengths included in the group of pieces of signal strength information being smaller than a predetermined difference threshold; obtain identifications included in the group of pieces of signal strength information, and determine smart devices having the obtained identifications as belonging to a group.
     
    3. A smart device grouping method, for use in a grouping terminal, characterized by comprising:

    transmitting (301) a transmission power value to each of selected smart devices;

    acquiring (302) pieces of signal strength information sent by each smart device, wherein said pieces of signal strength information are generated by the smart device after the smart device receives signals broadcast by the other one or more of the smart devices based on the transmission power value, respectively based on signal strengths of the received signals and identifications of the smart devices sending the received signals; and

    grouping (303) the selected smart devices according to the pieces of signal strength information sent by each smart device.


     
    4. The method of claim 3, wherein each piece of signal strength information further includes an identification of the smart device which generates the piece of signal strength information, and said grouping (303) the selected smart devices according to the pieces of signal strength information sent by said each smart device comprises:

    acquiring identifications included in the pieces of signal strength information;

    selecting pieces of signal strength information including different identifications from the pieces of signal strength information,;

    putting at least some of the selected pieces of signal strength information into a group based on signal strengths included in the selected pieces of signal strength information, wherein an absolute value of a difference between each other of signal strengths included in the group of pieces of signal strength information being smaller than a predetermined difference threshold; and

    obtaining identifications included in the group of pieces of signal strength information, and determining smart devices having the obtained identifications as belonging to a group.


     
    5. The method of claim 3 or 4, further comprising:

    acquiring types of smart devices in the group, the types including a smart electric lamp type and a smart socket type; and

    grouping smart devices of a same type in the group into a sub-group.


     
    6. The method of any of claims 3 to 5, further comprising:

    determining smart devices bound to a same user account as the selected smart devices; or

    determining smart devices located in a same local area network (LAN) as the selected smart devices.


     
    7. The method of any of claims 3-6, further comprising:

    receiving a control instruction for controlling smart devices in a designated group; and

    sending the control instruction to the smart devices in the designated group.


     
    8. A smart device grouping method, for use in a smart device, characterized by comprising:

    receiving (501) signals broadcast by one or more smart devices, the signals being sent by the smart devices according to a transmission power value after the smart devices receive the transmission power value;

    for a signal received from each of the smart devices, generating (502) a piece of signal strength information based on a received signal strength of the signal and an identification of the smart device sending the signal; and

    sending (503) the piece of signal strength information generated for each of the smart devices to a grouping terminal, to trigger the grouping terminal to group, based on the pieces of signal strength information acquired by the grouping terminal, smart devices generating respective sets of pieces of signal strength information.


     
    9. A grouping terminal characterized by comprising:

    a power value transmitting module (710) configured to transmit a transmission power value to each of selected smart devices;

    an acquiring module (720) configured to acquire pieces of signal strength information sent by each smart device, wherein said pieces of signal strength information are generated by the smart device after the smart device receives signals broadcast by the other one or more of the smart devices based on the transmission power value transmitted by the power value transmitting module, respectively based on signal strengths of the received signals and identifications of the smart devices sending the received signals; and

    a grouping module (730) configured to group the selected smart devices based on the pieces of signal strength information sent by each smart device and acquired by the acquiring module.


     
    10. The apparatus of claim 9, wherein each piece of signal strength information acquired by the acquiring module further comprises an identification of the smart device which generates the piece of signal strength information, and the grouping module (930) comprises:

    an identification acquiring sub-module (830a) configured to acquire identifications included in the pieces of signal strength information;

    a selecting sub-module (830b) configured to select pieces of signal strength information including different identifications from the pieces of signal strength information;

    a grouping sub-module (830c) configured to put at least some of the selected pieces of signal strength information selected by the selecting sub-module into a group based on signal strengths included in the selected pieces of signal strength information, wherein an absolute value of a difference between each other of signal strengths included in the group of pieces of signal strength information being smaller than a predetermined difference threshold;

    an identification grouping sub-module (830d) configured to obtain identifications included in the group of pieces of signal strength information and determine the smart devices having the obtained identifications as belonging to a group;

    a type acquiring sub-module (830e) configured to acquire types of smart devices in the group, the types including a smart electric lamp type and a smart socket type; and

    a type grouping sub-module (830f) configured to group smart devices of a same type in the group into a sub-group based on the types of smart devices in the group acquired by the type acquiring sub-module.


     
    11. The apparatus of claim 9 or 10, further comprising:

    a first determining module (840) configured to determine smart devices bound to a same user account as the selected smart devices; or

    a second determining module (850) configured to determine smart devices located in a same local area network (LAN) as the selected smart devices.


     
    12. The apparatus of any of claims 9-11, further comprising:

    an instruction receiving module (860) configured to receive a control instruction for controlling smart devices in a designated group; and

    an instruction sending module (870) configured to send the control instruction to the smart devices in the designated group.


     
    13. A smart device characterized by comprising:

    a receiving module (910) configured to receive signals broadcast by one or more other smart devices, the signals being sent by the smart devices according to a transmission power value after the smart devices receive the transmission power value; from a grouping terminal;

    a generating module (920) configured to: for a signal sent by each of the smart devices, generate a piece of signal strength information based on a received signal strength of the signal and an identification of the smart device sending the signal; and

    a sending module (930) configured to send the piece of signal strength information generated by the generating module for each of the smart devices to the grouping terminal, to trigger the grouping terminal to group, based on the pieces of signal strength information acquired by the grouping terminal, smart devices generating respective sets of pieces of signal strength information.


     
    14. A smart device grouping terminal, comprising:

    a processor (1120); and

    a memory (1104) storing instructions executable by the processor,

    characterized in that the processor (1120) is configured to execute instructions to perform all of the steps of a method according to any of claims 3-7.


     
    15. A smart device, comprising:

    a processor (1222); and

    a memory (1232) storing instructions executable by the processor,

    characterized in that the processor (1222) is configured to execute instructions to perform all of the steps of a method according to claim 8.


     


    Ansprüche

    1. System zum Gruppieren intelligenter Vorrichtungen, das ein Gruppierungsendgerät (120) und wenigstens zwei ausgewählte intelligente Vorrichtungen (140) umfasst,
    dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass das Gruppierungsendgerät (120) dafür konfiguriert ist, einen Sendeleistungswert an jede der ausgewählten intelligenten Vorrichtungen zu senden,
    wobei jede der intelligenten Vorrichtungen (140) dafür konfiguriert ist:

    ein Signal basierend auf dem Sendeleistungswert rundzusenden und

    nach dem Empfangen von Signalen, die durch das eine oder die mehreren anderen der intelligenten Vorrichtungen basierend auf dem Sendeleistungswert rundgesendet wurden, einzelne Signalstärkeinformationen jeweils auf der Grundlage von Signalstärken der empfangenen Signale und Identifizierungen der intelligenten Vorrichtungen, die die empfangenen Signale senden, zu generieren, und

    das Gruppierungsendgerät (120) ferner dafür konfiguriert ist, die einzelnen Signalstärkeinformationen, die durch jede intelligente Vorrichtung generiert wurden, zu erfassen und die ausgewählten intelligenten Vorrichtungen auf der Basis der einzelnen Signalstärkeninformationen zu gruppieren.
     
    2. System nach Anspruch 1, wobei jede einzelne Signalstärkeinformation ferner eine Identifizierung der intelligenten Vorrichtung enthält, welche die einzelne Signalstärkeinformation generiert, und
    das Gruppierungsendgerät (120) ferner dafür konfiguriert ist:

    Identifizierungen zu erfassen, die in den einzelnen Signalstärkeninformationen enthalten sind,

    einzelne Signalstärkeinformationen einschließlich verschiedener Identifizierungen aus den einzelnen Signalstärkeninformationen auszuwählen,

    zumindest einige der ausgewählten einzelnen Signalstärkeinformationen anhand von Signalstärken, die in den ausgewählten einzelnen Signalstärkeninformationen enthalten sind, in eine Gruppe einzuteilen, wobei ein absoluter Wert einer Differenz zwischen jeder anderen der Signalstärken, die in der Gruppe aus einzelnen Signalstärkeinformationen enthalten sind, kleiner ist als eine zuvor festgelegte Differenzschwelle,

    Identifizierungen, die in der Gruppe aus einzelnen Signalstärkeinformationen enthalten sind, zu erhalten und intelligente Vorrichtungen, die die erhaltenen Identifizierungen aufweisen, als zu einer Gruppe gehörend zu bestimmen.


     
    3. Verfahren zum Gruppieren intelligenter Vorrichtungen zur Verwendung in einem Gruppierungsendgerät, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass es umfasst:

    Senden (301) eines Sendeleistungswertes zu jeder von ausgewählten intelligenten Vorrichtungen,

    Erfassen (302) einzelner Signalstärkeinformationen, die von jeder intelligenten Vorrichtung gesendet wurden, wobei die einzelnen Signalstärkeinformationen durch die intelligente Vorrichtung, nachdem die intelligente Vorrichtung Signale empfangen hat, die durch die eine oder die mehreren der anderen intelligenten Vorrichtungen auf der Basis des Sendeleistungswertes rundgesendet wurden, jeweils anhand der Signalstärken der empfangenen Signale und Identifizierungen der intelligenten Vorrichtungen, die die empfangenen Signale gesendet haben, generiert werden, und

    Gruppieren (303) der ausgewählten intelligenten Vorrichtungen gemäß den einzelnen Signalstärkeinformationen, die durch jede intelligente Vorrichtung gesendet wurden.


     
    4. Verfahren nach Anspruch 3, wobei jede einzelne Signalstärkeinformation ferner eine Identifizierung der intelligenten Vorrichtung, welche die einzelne Signalstärkeinformation generiert, enthält, und das Gruppieren (303) der ausgewählten intelligenten Vorrichtungen gemäß den einzelnen Signalstärkeinformationen, die durch jede intelligente Vorrichtung gesendet wurden, umfasst:

    Erfassen von Identifizierungen, die in den einzelnen Signalstärkeninformationen enthalten sind,

    Auswählen einzelner Signalstärkeinformationen, die verschiedene Identifizierungen enthalten, aus den einzelnen Signalstärkeninformationen,

    Einteilen wenigstens einiger der ausgewählten einzelnen Signalstärkeinformationen in eine Gruppe anhand von Signalstärken, die in den ausgewählten einzelnen Signalstärkeninformationen enthalten sind, wobei ein absoluter Wert einer Differenz zwischen jeder anderen von Signalstärken, die in der Gruppe aus einzelnen Signalstärkeinformationen enthalten sind, kleiner ist als eine zuvor festgelegte Differenzschwelle, und

    Erhalten von Identifizierungen, die in der Gruppe aus einzelnen Signalstärkeinformationen enthalten sind, und Bestimmen intelligenter Vorrichtungen, welche die erhaltenen Identifizierungen aufweisen, als zu einer Gruppe gehörend.


     
    5. Verfahren nach Anspruch 3 oder 4, ferner umfassend:

    Erfassen von Typen intelligenter Vorrichtungen in der Gruppe, wobei die Typen einen intelligenten elektrischen Lampentyp und einen intelligenten Fassungstyp enthalten, und

    Gruppieren von intelligenten Vorrichtungen desselben Typs in der Gruppe zu einer Untergruppe.


     
    6. Verfahren nach einem der Ansprüche 3 bis 5, ferner umfassend:

    Bestimmen von intelligenten Vorrichtungen, die an denselben Nutzer-Account gebunden sind wie die ausgewählten intelligenten Vorrichtungen, oder

    Bestimmen von intelligenten Vorrichtungen, die sich im selben Local Area Network (LAN) befinden wie die ausgewählten intelligenten Vorrichtungen.


     
    7. Verfahren nach einem der Ansprüche 3 - 6, ferner umfassend:

    Empfangen einer Steuerungsinstruktion zum Steuern intelligenter Vorrichtungen in einer bezeichneten Gruppe und

    Senden der Steuerungsinstruktion zu den intelligenten Vorrichtungen in der bezeichneten Gruppe.


     
    8. Verfahren zum Gruppieren intelligenter Vorrichtungen zur Verwendung in einer intelligenten Vorrichtung, gekennzeichnet durch Umfassen von:

    Empfangen (501) von Signalen, die durch eine oder mehrere intelligente Vorrichtungen rundgesendet werden, wobei die Signale durch die intelligenten Vorrichtungen gemäß einem Sendeleistungswert gesendet werden, nachdem die intelligenten Vorrichtungen den Sendeleistungswert empfangen haben,

    für ein Signal, das von jeder der intelligenten Vorrichtungen kommend empfangen wurde, Generieren (502) einer einzelnen Signalstärkeinformation anhand einer Empfangssignalstärke des Signals und einer Identifizierung der intelligenten Vorrichtung, die des Signal sendet, und

    Senden (503) der einzelnen Signalstärkeinformation, die für jede der intelligenten Vorrichtungen generiert wurde, zu einem Gruppierungsendgerät, um das Gruppierungsendgerät zu veranlassen, auf der Basis der einzelnen Signalstärkeinformationen, die von dem Gruppierungsendgerät erfasst wurden, intelligente Vorrichtungen zu gruppieren, die jeweilige Sätze von einzelnen Signalstärkeninformationen generieren.


     
    9. Gruppierungsendgerät, gekennzeichnet durch Umfassen von:

    einem Leistungswert-Sendemodul (710), das dafür konfiguriert ist, einen Sendeleistungswert zu jedem von ausgewählten intelligenten Vorrichtungen zu senden,

    einem Erfassungsmodul (720), das dafür konfiguriert ist, einzelne Signalstärkeinformationen zu erfassen, die von jeder intelligenten Vorrichtung gesendet werden, wobei die einzelnen Signalstärkeinformationen durch die intelligente Vorrichtung, nachdem die intelligente Vorrichtung Signale empfangen hat, die durch die eine oder die mehreren der anderen intelligenten Vorrichtungen auf der Basis des durch das Leistungswert-Sendemodul gesendeten Sendeleistungswertes rundgesendet wurden, jeweils anhand der Signalstärken der empfangenen Signale und von Identifizierungen der intelligenten Vorrichtungen, welche die empfangenen Signale gesendet haben, generiert werden, und

    einem Gruppierungsmodul (730), das dafür konfiguriert ist, die ausgewählten intelligenten Vorrichtungen auf der Basis der einzelnen Signalstärkeinformationen zu gruppieren, die durch jede intelligente Vorrichtung gesendet und durch das Erfassungsmodul erfasst wurden.


     
    10. Vorrichtung nach Anspruch 9, wobei jede durch das Erfassungsmodul erfasste einzelne Signalstärkeinformation ferner eine Identifizierung der intelligenten Vorrichtung umfasst, welche die einzelne Signalstärkeinformation generiert, und das Gruppierungsmodul (930) umfasst:

    ein Identifizierungserfassungs-Untermodul (830a), das dafür konfiguriert ist, Identifizierungen zu erfassen, die in den einzelnen Signalstärkeninformationen enthalten sind,

    ein Auswahl-Untermodul (830b), das dafür konfiguriert ist, einzelne Signalstärkeinformationen, die verschiedene Identifizierungen enthalten, aus den einzelnen Signalstärkeninformationen auszuwählen,

    ein Gruppierungs-Untermodul (830c), das dafür konfiguriert ist, mindestens einige der ausgewählten einzelnen Signalstärkeinformationen, die durch das Auswahl-Untermodul ausgewählt wurden, anhand der Signalstärken, die in den ausgewählten einzelnen Signalstärkeninformationen enthalten sind, in eine Gruppe einzuteilen, wobei ein absoluter Wert einer Differenz zwischen jeder anderen der Signalstärken, die in der Gruppe aus einzelnen Signalstärkeinformationen enthalten sind, kleiner ist als eine zuvor festgelegte Differenzschwelle,

    ein Identifizierungsgruppierungs-Untermodul (830d), das dafür konfiguriert ist, Identifizierungen zu erhalten, die in der Gruppe aus einzelnen Signalstärkeinformationen enthalten sind, und die intelligenten Vorrichtungen, die die Identifizierungen aufweisen, als zu einer Gruppe gehörend zu bestimmen,

    ein Typerfassungs-Untermodul (830e), das dafür konfiguriert ist, Typen von intelligenten Vorrichtungen in der Gruppe zu erfassen, wobei die Typen einen intelligenten elektrischen Lampentyp und einen intelligenten Fassungstyp enthalten, und

    ein Typgruppierungs-Untermodul (830f), das dafür konfiguriert ist, intelligente Vorrichtungen desselben Typs in der Gruppe auf der Basis der Typen von intelligenten Vorrichtungen in der Gruppe, die durch das Typerfassungs-Untermodul erfasst wurden, zu einer Untergruppe zu gruppieren.


     
    11. Vorrichtung nach Anspruch 9 oder 10, ferner umfassend:

    ein erstes Bestimmungsmodul (840), das dafür konfiguriert ist, intelligente Vorrichtungen zu bestimmen, die an denselben Nutzer-Account gebunden sind wie die ausgewählten intelligenten Vorrichtungen, oder

    ein zweites Bestimmungsmodul (850), das dafür konfiguriert ist, intelligente Vorrichtungen zu bestimmen, die sich im selben Local Area Network (LAN) befinden wie die ausgewählten intelligenten Vorrichtungen.


     
    12. Vorrichtung nach einem der Ansprüche 9 - 11, ferner umfassend:

    ein Instruktionsempfangsmodul (860), das dafür konfiguriert ist, eine Steuerungsinstruktion zum Steuern intelligenter Vorrichtungen in einer bezeichneten Gruppe zu empfangen, und

    ein Instruktionssendemodul (870), das dafür konfiguriert ist, die Steuerungsinstruktion zu den intelligenten Vorrichtungen in der bezeichneten Gruppe zu senden.


     
    13. Intelligente Vorrichtung, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass sie umfasst:

    ein Empfangsmodul (910), das dafür konfiguriert ist, Signale zu empfangen, die durch eine oder mehrere andere intelligente Vorrichtungen rundgesendet werden, wobei die Signale durch die intelligenten Vorrichtungen gemäß einem Sendeleistungswert gesendet werden, nach die intelligenten Vorrichtungen den Sendeleistungswert von einem Gruppierungsendgerät kommend empfangen haben,

    ein Generierungsmodul (920), das dafür konfiguriert, für ein Signal, das durch jede der intelligenten Vorrichtungen gesendet wurde, eine einzelne Signalstärkeinformation anhand einer Empfangssignalstärke des Signals und einer Identifizierung der intelligenten Vorrichtung, die das Signal sendet, zu generieren, und

    ein Sendemodul (930), das dafür konfiguriert ist, die einzelne Signalstärkeinformation, die durch das Generierungsmodul für jede der intelligenten Vorrichtungen generiert wurde, zu dem Gruppierungsendgerät zu senden,

    das Gruppierungsendgerät zu veranlassen, auf der Basis der durch das Gruppierungsendgerät erfassten einzelnen Signalstärkeinformationen intelligente Vorrichtungen zu gruppieren, die jeweilige Sätze von einzelnen Signalstärkeninformationen generieren.


     
    14. Endgerät zum Gruppieren intelligenter Vorrichtungen, umfassend:

    einen Prozessor (1120) und

    einen Speicher (1104), der Instruktionen speichert, die durch den Prozessor ausgeführt werden können,

    dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass der Prozessor (1120) dafür konfiguriert ist, Instruktionen auszuführen, um alle Schritte eines Verfahrens nach einem der Ansprüche 3 - 7 auszuführen.


     
    15. Intelligente Vorrichtung, umfassend:

    einen Prozessor (1222) und

    einen Speicher (1232), der Instruktionen speichert, die durch den Prozessor ausgeführt werden können,

    dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass der Prozessor (1222) dafür konfiguriert ist, Instruktionen auszuführen, um alle Schritte eines Verfahrens nach Anspruch 8 auszuführen.


     


    Revendications

    1. Système de regroupement de dispositifs intelligents, comprenant : un terminal de regroupement (120) et au moins deux dispositifs intelligents sélectionnés (140),
    caractérisé en ce que le terminal de regroupement (120) est configuré de manière à transmettre une valeur de puissance de transmission à chacun des dispositifs intelligents sélectionnés ;
    chacun des dispositifs intelligents (140) est configuré de manière à :

    diffuser un signal sur la base de la valeur de puissance de transmission ; et

    suite à la réception de signaux diffusés par l'autre ou les autres dispositifs intelligents sur la base de la valeur de puissance de transmission, générer des éléments d'information d'intensité de signal respectivement sur la base d'intensités de signal des signaux reçus et d'identifications des dispositifs intelligents envoyant les signaux reçus ; et dans lequel le terminal de regroupement (120) est en outre configuré de manière à acquérir les éléments d'information d'intensité de signal générés par chaque dispositif intelligent et à regrouper les dispositifs intelligents sélectionnés sur la base des éléments d'information d'intensité de signal.


     
    2. Système selon la revendication 1, dans lequel chaque élément d'information d'intensité de signal inclut en outre une identification du dispositif intelligent qui génère l'élément d'information d'intensité de signal ; et
    le terminal de regroupement (120) est en outre configuré de manière à : acquérir des identifications incluses dans les éléments d'information d'intensité de signal ; sélectionner des éléments d'information d'intensité de signal incluant différentes identifications parmi les éléments d'information d'intensité de signal ; placer au moins certains des éléments d'information d'intensité de signal sélectionnés dans un groupe, sur la base d'intensités de signal incluses dans les éléments d'information d'intensité de signal sélectionnés, dans lequel une valeur absolue d'une différence entre chacune des autres intensités de signal incluses dans le groupe d'éléments d'information d'intensité de signal est inférieure à un seuil de différence prédéterminé ; obtenir des identifications incluses dans le groupe d'éléments d'information d'intensité de signal, et déterminer les dispositifs intelligents présentant les identifications obtenues comme étant des dispositifs appartenant à un groupe.
     
    3. Procédé de regroupement de dispositifs intelligents destiné à être utilisé dans un terminal de regroupement, caractérisé en ce qu'il comprend les étapes ci-dessous consistant à :

    transmettre (301) une valeur de puissance de transmission à chacun des dispositifs intelligents sélectionnés ;

    acquérir (302) des éléments d'information d'intensité de signal envoyés par chaque dispositif intelligent, dans lequel lesdits éléments d'information d'intensité de signal sont générés par le dispositif intelligent après que le dispositif intelligent a reçu des signaux diffusés par l'autre ou les autres dispositifs intelligents sur la base de la valeur de puissance de transmission, respectivement, sur la base d'intensités de signal des signaux reçus et d'identifications des dispositifs intelligents envoyant les signaux reçus ; et

    regrouper (303) les dispositifs intelligents sélectionnés selon les éléments d'information d'intensité de signal envoyés par chaque dispositif intelligent.


     
    4. Procédé selon la revendication 3, dans lequel chaque élément d'information d'intensité de signal inclut en outre une identification du
    dispositif intelligent qui génère l'élément d'information d'intensité de signal, et dans lequel ladite étape de regroupement (303) des dispositifs intelligents sélectionnés selon les éléments d'information d'intensité de signal envoyés par ledit dispositif intelligent comprend les étapes ci-dessous consistant à :

    acquérir des identifications incluses dans les éléments d'information d'intensité de signal ;

    sélectionner des éléments d'information d'intensité de signal incluant différentes identifications parmi les éléments d'information d'intensité de signal ;

    placer au moins certains des éléments d'information d'intensité de signal sélectionnés dans un groupe, sur la base d'intensités de signal incluses dans les éléments d'information d'intensité de signal sélectionnés, dans lequel une valeur absolue d'une différence entre chacune des autres intensités de signal incluses dans le groupe d'éléments d'information d'intensité de signal est inférieure à un seuil de différence prédéterminé ; et

    obtenir des identifications incluses dans le groupe d'éléments d'information d'intensité de signal, et déterminer les dispositifs intelligents présentant les identifications obtenues comme étant des dispositifs appartenant à un groupe.


     
    5. Procédé selon la revendication 3 ou 4, comprenant en outre les étapes ci-dessous consistant à :

    acquérir des types de dispositifs intelligents dans le groupe, les types incluant un type de lampe électrique intelligente et un type de prise intelligente ; et

    regrouper des dispositifs intelligents d'un même type du groupe dans un sous-groupe.


     
    6. Procédé selon l'une quelconque des revendications 3 à 5, comprenant en outre les étapes ci-dessous consistant à :

    déterminer des dispositifs intelligents liés à un même compte d'utilisateur comme étant les dispositifs intelligents sélectionnés ; ou

    déterminer des dispositifs intelligents situés dans un même réseau local (LAN) comme étant les dispositifs intelligents sélectionnés.


     
    7. Procédé selon l'une quelconque des revendications 3 à 6, comprenant en outre les étapes ci-dessous consistant à :

    recevoir une instruction de commande pour commander des dispositifs intelligents dans un groupe désigné ; et

    envoyer l'instruction de commande aux dispositifs intelligents dans le groupe désigné.


     
    8. Procédé de regroupement de dispositifs intelligents destiné à être utilisé dans un dispositif intelligent, caractérisé en ce qu'il comprend les étapes ci-dessous consistant à :

    recevoir (501) des signaux diffusés par un ou plusieurs dispositifs intelligents, les signaux étant envoyés par les dispositifs intelligents selon une valeur de puissance de transmission, après que les dispositifs intelligents ont reçu la valeur de puissance de transmission ;

    pour un signal reçu en provenance de chacun des dispositifs intelligents, générer (502) un élément d'information d'intensité de signal sur la base de l'intensité de signal reçue du signal et d'une identification du dispositif intelligent envoyant le signal ; et

    envoyer (503) l'élément d'information d'intensité de signal généré pour chacun des dispositifs intelligents, à un terminal de regroupement, en vue d'amener le terminal de regroupement à regrouper, sur la base des éléments d'information d'intensité de signal acquis par le terminal de regroupement, des dispositifs intelligents générant des ensembles respectifs d'éléments d'information d'intensité de signal.


     
    9. Terminal de regroupement, caractérisé en ce qu'il comprend :

    un module de transmission de valeur de puissance (710) configuré de manière à transmettre une valeur de puissance de transmission à chaque dispositif parmi des dispositifs intelligents sélectionnés ;

    un module d'acquisition (720) configuré de manière à acquérir des éléments d'information d'intensité de signal envoyés par chaque dispositif intelligent, dans lequel lesdits éléments d'information d'intensité de signal sont générés par le dispositif intelligent après que le dispositif intelligent a reçu des signaux diffusés par l'autre ou les autres dispositifs intelligents sur la base de la valeur de puissance de transmission transmise par le module de transmission de valeur de puissance, respectivement, sur la base d'intensités de signal des signaux reçus et d'identifications des dispositifs intelligents envoyant les signaux reçus ; et

    un module de regroupement (730) configuré de manière à regrouper les dispositifs intelligents sélectionnés sur la base des éléments d'information d'intensité de signal envoyés par chaque dispositif intelligent et acquis par le module d'acquisition.


     
    10. Appareil selon la revendication 9, dans lequel chaque élément d'information d'intensité de signal acquis par le module d'acquisition comprend en outre une identification du dispositif intelligent qui génère l'élément d'information d'intensité de signal, et dans lequel le module de regroupement (930) comprend :

    un sous-module d'acquisition d'identifications (830a) configuré de manière à acquérir des identifications incluses dans les éléments d'information d'intensité de signal ;

    un sous-module de sélection (830b) configuré de manière à sélectionner des éléments d'information d'intensité de signal incluant différentes identifications parmi les éléments d'information d'intensité de signal ;

    un sous-module de regroupement (830c) configuré de manière à placer au moins certains des éléments d'information d'intensité de signal sélectionnés par le sous-module de sélection dans un groupe, sur la base d'intensités de signal incluses dans les éléments d'information d'intensité de signal sélectionnés, dans lequel une valeur absolue d'une différence entre chacune des autres intensités de signal incluses dans le groupe d'éléments d'information d'intensité de signal est inférieure à un seuil de différence prédéterminé ;

    un sous-module de regroupement d'identifications (830d) configuré de manière à obtenir des identifications incluses dans le groupe d'éléments d'information d'intensité de signal et à déterminer les dispositifs intelligents présentant les identifications obtenues comme étant des dispositifs appartenant à un groupe ;

    un sous-module d'acquisition de types (830e) configuré de manière à acquérir des types de dispositifs intelligents dans le groupe, les types incluant un type de lampe électrique intelligente et un type de prise intelligente ; et

    un sous-module de regroupement de types (830f) configuré de manière à regrouper des dispositifs intelligents d'un même type du groupe, dans un sous-groupe, sur la base des types de dispositifs intelligents dans le groupe acquis par le sous-module d'acquisition de types.


     
    11. Appareil selon la revendication 9 ou 10, comprenant en outre :

    un premier module de détermination (840) configuré de manière à déterminer des dispositifs intelligents liés à un même compte d'utilisateur comme étant les dispositifs intelligents sélectionnés ; ou

    un second module de détermination (850) configuré de manière à déterminer des dispositifs intelligents situés dans un même réseau local (LAN) comme étant les dispositifs intelligents sélectionnés.


     
    12. Appareil selon l'une quelconque des revendications 9 à 11, comprenant en outre :

    un module de réception d'instruction (860) configuré de manière à recevoir une instruction de commande pour commander des dispositifs intelligents dans un groupe désigné ; et

    un module d'envoi d'instruction (870) configuré de manière à envoyer l'instruction de commande aux dispositifs intelligents dans le groupe désigné.


     
    13. Dispositif intelligent, caractérisé en ce qu'il comprend :

    un module de réception (910) configuré de manière à recevoir des signaux diffusés par un ou plusieurs autres dispositifs intelligents, les signaux étant envoyés par les dispositifs intelligents selon une valeur de puissance de transmission après que les dispositifs intelligents ont reçu la valeur de puissance de transmission en provenance d'un terminal de regroupement ;

    un module de génération (920) configuré de manière à : pour un signal envoyé par chacun des dispositifs intelligents, générer un élément d'information d'intensité de signal, sur la base d'une intensité de signal reçue du signal et d'une identification du dispositif intelligent envoyant le signal ; et

    un module d'envoi (930) configuré de manière à envoyer l'élément d'information d'intensité de signal généré par le module de génération pour chacun des dispositifs intelligents, au terminal de regroupement, en vue d'amener le terminal de regroupement à regrouper, sur la base des éléments d'information d'intensité de signal acquis par le terminal de regroupement, des dispositifs intelligents générant des ensembles respectifs d'éléments d'information d'intensité de signal.


     
    14. Terminal de regroupement de dispositifs intelligents, comprenant :

    un processeur (1120) ; et

    une mémoire (1104) stockant des instructions exécutables par le processeur,

    caractérisé en ce que le processeur (1120) est configuré de manière à exécuter des instructions en vue de mettre en oeuvre toutes les étapes d'un procédé selon l'une quelconque des revendications 3 à 7.


     
    15. Dispositif intelligent, comprenant :

    un processeur (1222) ; et

    une mémoire (1232) stockant des instructions exécutables par le processeur,

    caractérisé en ce que le processeur (1222) est configuré de manière à exécuter des instructions en vue de mettre en oeuvre toutes les étapes d'un procédé selon la revendication 8.


     




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    REFERENCES CITED IN THE DESCRIPTION



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    Patent documents cited in the description