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TI develops converged platform running on one DSP

Posted: 12 Sep 2006 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Texas Instruments? TI? converged platform? DaVinci?

Texas Instruments Inc. (TI) has developed a converged platform running on a single DSP and targeting multiple end equipment including video telephony, internet protocol set-top boxes (IPSTB), media centers and portable multimedia players.

Converging different applications into one product usually requires additional silicon even though much of the technology and protocols are shared. Leveraging TI's digital video software development kit based on DaVinci technology enables developers to extend the functionality of existing hardware designs to integrate entirely new applications without adding to the BOM, the company said.

"TI provides the flexible platform upon which these converged applications can be explored and then cost-effectively be deployed," said Charlie Gonsalves, digital video new business development manager, TI. "We can now take the converged home network out of the 'Future Pavilion,' so to speak, and into the marketplace."

TI said it has extended application programming interfaces (APIs) to allow converged functionality by offering access into the framework to enable, for example, an existing STB application to provide video telephony functionality without requiring another processor. As a result, other than the addition of a camera and microphone, designing a converged internet protocol television (IPTV) STB with video telephony functionality becomes a matter of introducing new software.

Coupled with core functionality, the use of extended APIs and frameworks shifts development towards a component-based approach. In this way, OEMs are able to easily explore integrating multiple applications using the same cost-effective base hardware architecture to create a wide family of converged devices, TI said, including IP-STBs coupled with video telephony, broadcast TV, video answering machines and home security systems that can then stream content to digital media adaptors and 3G handsets over IP networks and portable multimedia players, to name a few. With this technology OEMs can offer affordable, advanced digital video services to consumers.

Full ecosystem
To demonstrate the effectiveness of its converged development framework, TI collaborated with several industry players to create a platform based on a single DSP processor that provides IP-STB and video telephony functionality. TI's digital media processors based on DaVinci technology provide the flexible hardware foundation capable of supporting multiple codecs such as MPEG-2, H.264, DivX and Windows Media Video (WMV). Software from ANT, a provider of software and solutions for the IPTV, hybrid TV and consumer electronics industries, enables interactive content applications that control everything from video-on-demand (VoD) interfaces to dynamic news, information and communication applications.

"The availability of the ANT Galio on TI's converged platform will allow OEMs to quickly deliver sophisticated combinations of digital TV programming with interactive content and services to the customer," said Simon Woodward, CEO, ANT. " Using the very latest industry content programming standards, OEMs can easily improve the consumer interaction with their product, significantly enhancing the end-user experience."

RADVISION supplied its Multimedia Terminal Framework, including a fully-interoperable session initiation protocol (SIP) stack and call control management. "Leveraging our extensive know-how in the SIP stacks' development, the powerful and inherent flexibility of DaVinci technology will allow us to drive video telephony capabilities into next-generation connected media devices, such as IP-STBs, portable multimedia players, media centers and more," said Adi Paz, senior marketing and product management director, RADVISION. "In addition, the integration of our 3G-324M stack into the converged platform leveraging TI's DaVinci technology will enable the IPTV world to truly address interoperability with 3G mobile phones."

TI has also collaborated with Ittiam, a technology company specializing in digital media applications. "The ease and speed with which we could transform our high performance video telephony into a converged application on an IPSTB emphasizes the power of DaVinci technology," said Sattam Dasgupta, VP, media streaming business, Ittiam. "Video conferencing will now move from boardrooms to living rooms at affordable prices."

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