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Media server platform rolls for home networks

Posted: 01 Aug 2007 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:home digital content transfer? home network? media server reference platform?

Offering service providers and consumers the ability to process, secure and distribute multiple streams of rich digital content throughout the home, Freescale Semiconductor has unveiled a media server reference platform. OEMs and ODMs can now create true networked media hub appliances for the small office/home office and connected home markets.

Home networks
Using networked PCs and entertainment appliances in their homes, today's consumers manage, store and share content in the form of data, photos, video and digital music. Next-generation networked attached storage (NAS) home products are adding media server features to traditional data backup functions, resulting in networked media hub appliances that are available through a variety of service providers including telecom and cable providers.

Enabling the creation of sophisticated yet inexpensive central home server systems, Freescale's Media-Server-in-a-Box reference platform combines true media server functionality and enables secure sharing and storage of content.

Built on the reliable PowerQUICC communications processor technology that drives the MPC8349e-mITX platform, the offering provides hardware support for transcription, transcoding and transrating via the ViXS XCodeTM 2100 Series IC. Integrated media server software stacks provide interoperability and synchronization capabilities, while user-friendly software interfaces enable service providers to easily deploy the solution in specific markets.

As personal and premium content becomes prevalent inside the home, the need to aggregate it into a similar format becomes essential in home media server appliances. The ViXSTM 2100 Series IC combines MPEG encoding and transcoding to handle multiple streams and standards for worldwide conditional access and content protection to support multiple digital rights management schemes.

Transcoding diverse formats
The platform meets a number of critical requirements for connected home technology including piracy protection software as well as QoS and ease-of-use features.

The system, based on PowerQUICC processor technology, also helps enable the creation of end devices compliant with the Digital Living Network Alliance (DLNA) standardmaking it easy for consumers to manage, view, print and share digital content across multiple devices within the home.

The platform provides transcription from Windows Media Digital Rights Management (DRM) to Digital Transmission Content Protection Over IP (DTCP-IP) link protection schemes, helping to provide secure digital content transfer among multiple devices in a home network.

Transcoding allows consumers to stream content in different resolutions and protocols into various client formats, enabling transmission of the HDTV format MPEG2HD to MPEG4 in their home. Transrating reduces network loading while maintaining superb video quality. Transcoding is supported in the hardware via the ViXSTM 2100 Series IC to help provide consumers with the performance and quality they expect and demand from broadband services.

"The ability to provide secure digital rights management for content distribution is a critical enabling technology for content and service providers alike," said IdaRose Sylvester, IDC senior semiconductor analyst. "Companies that bring together a combination of expertise in silicon and software technologies from carrier class networks may have a competitive advantage in the market."

Initial samples of the MPC8349E-mITX Media-Server-in-a-Box reference platform are available now.

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