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Processor and middleware platform eases network upgrade

Posted: 09 Jan 2006 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:BridgeCo? Embedded Digital Media Player? eDMP? reference design? processor IC?

BridgeCo's Embedded Digital Media Player (eDMP) reference design enables any consumer electronics (CE) OEM to add internal networking capability to their new CE product designs. The reference design is based on the company's DLNA certified DMP processor IC and middleware platform.

The eDMP reference design is a complete networking solution that includes BridgeCo's proprietary ARM-based, DSP-enhanced DM850 processor, a real-time operating system (RTOS) and a proprietary application software stack. The DM850 processor interfaces directly to 802.11/Wi-Fi, HomePlug Powerline, USB and Ethernet PHY chips, and it drives both I2S and S/PDIF audio outputs that interface directly to the host audio system.

The processor/firmware combination handles TCP/IP, Ethernet and USB networking protocols; MP3, WMA, WMA-DRM and other audio format decompression; and DTCP/IP, Windows Media Connect and many other digital rights management (DRM) encryption/decryption processing and authentication schemes.

With the BridgeCo eDMP subsystem, any CE product becomes a node on a wired or wireless home network. A/V receivers, DVD players, stereos, home theaters and radios that incorporate an eDMP subsystem can play protected and unprotected audio files from any computer on the home network, or stream audio and online radio stations right from the Internet. With a built-in USB 2.0 port, the eDMP also enables the host audio system to play music files directly from portable MP3 players, memory sticks or hard disk drives.

Designed specifically for rapid integration into the existing remote control and display architecture of a host system, the eDMP sub-system communicates directly with a host controller using an XML-based proprietary protocol via an SPI slave interface. The BridgeCo eDMP receives commands from the host controller, and transmits menu navigation, operating information and other data via the same interface to the host controller, which formats the data for display on the CE system.

"Media content is increasingly sourced online, and stored on computers," said BridgeCo CEO Mark McEachen. "In the very near future, all CE devices will require embedded networking capabilities so consumers can access these media sources. BridgeCo's eDMP reference design enables OEMs to add this network capability today, with minimal design effort and maximum confidence in a proven, tested and mature solution."

BridgeCo will continue demonstrating its eDMP reference designs at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, through January 8. A complete evaluation board, including wired Ethernet, wireless 802.11 and USB 2.0 interfaces and a fully functional eDMP firmware stack, is available for $700.

- Marty Gold

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