Archive for April 2002

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[eccr] Global CE firms collaborate to define HDMI specification

Fri Apr 19 20:17:32 GMT 2002

Title: Global CE firms collaborate to define HDMI specification

Global CE firms collaborate to define HDMI specification

18/04/2002    By Duncan Alexander Kerr*

A number of global consumer electronics firms, including Sony
and Philips, are to form a working group to define the next-generation digital interface specification for consumer electronics products.

Designed facilitate the new era of digital entertainment, the High Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI) specification is understood to combine high-definition video and multi-channel audio in one digital interface. This interface builds on DVI, offering new features while maintaining full backward compatibility.

The working group, further including Hitachi, Matsushita Electric (Panasonic), Silicon Image, Thomson and Toshiba will collaborate to develop this digital interface for future products such as digital televisions (DTV), DVD players, set-top boxes and other digital A/V products.

It is understood, HDMI offers significant advantages over existing analogue A/V interfaces. Its uncompressed, digital format transports high-definition video and multi-channel audio without processing or degrading them. By combining audio with video on one cable, HDMI offers a connection alternative to existing analogue A/V cables. The new format uses a small, easy-to-use connector, suitable for portable products like digital camcorders.

Furthermore, HDMI is also boasting compatibility between products and will support many capabilities of the interoperability protocol, popular in Europe.

Motion picture producers, as well as satellite and cable companies, are understood to have welcomed High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection (HDCP) for Digital Visual Interface (DVI), an existing industry standard. The key underlying technology in DVI will be the basis for the new HDMI specification. Developed by Intel, with contributions from Silicon Image, HDCP for HDMI will be available to HDMI adopters.

"It is basic market dynamics that as mechanisms are introduced which will protect digital content, consumers will find their choices of content ever increasing. HDMI with HDCP is just such a mechanism, providing designers with a cost effective, protected digital solution to replace legacy component analogue connections," said Andrew G. Setos, president of engineering for the Fox Group.

* Duncan Alexander Kerr is currently Editor for TV Meets the Web. He studied in the United Kingdom where he obtained an Honorary MA in History & Philosophy. Since graduating in 2000, he has worked in publishing in California and as a researcher with the Southwestern Company. On returning from the US, he then worked in politics for Menzies Campbell QC MP, Liberal Democrat Party. Furthermore, he underwent editorial training with PMA in London and subsequently worked on the editorial team of Utility Week & Utility Europe.


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