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Low-cost STB platform boosts Brazil's TV viewing

Posted: 04 Sep 2008 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:video decoder? STB? digital TV?

Proview Electronics Co. Ltd will be using STMicroelectronics' (ST) MPEG decoder technology in its new XPS-1000 digital terrestrial STB. This considered as Brazil's first STB that will be employing ST's new STi7101 low-cost HDTV MPEG2 / H264 single-chip video decoder. It is expected that its cost will retail for only $180. This is a reduced price compared to the existing equipment. With this, affordable digital TV will be made available to every Brazilian household.

The digital terrestrial TV premiere in the all-new Brazil's Sistema Brasileiro de Televis?o Digital (SBTVD) digital TV standard was launched in December 2007 in Sao Paulo, and later along with other major cities like Belo Horizonte and Rio de Janeiro in 2008.

Struggling market
Potentially, digital STB has an estimated market of 60 million Brazilian households but the relatively high cost of the STB equipment makes it difficult for the viewers to subscribe to the technology. With the Brazilian government's aggressive target to reduce the retail price, Proview was established in 1999 and started drafting the XPS-1000 and began the partnership with application experts from ST's design center in Sao Paulo in March 2007.

"The STi7101 platform used to have high level of integration but with very competitive cost," said Tseng Ling Yun, CEO, Proview-Brazil. "But with this new STB, which was all developed in Brazil, will help millions of Brazilian families to enjoy affordable digital TV," he added.

New TV platform's features
The STi7101 is the recent innovation to ST's STB7100 family of high capacity HDTV MPEG2/H264 single-chip video decoders. The superior capacity of these devices, which integrate all the STB functions and multistandard decoding circuitry into a compact chip, along with production with ST's 80nm process technology, produces the most cost-efficient solutions. This also reduces both design and production costs for STB vendors.

The STi7101 offers all the necessary requirements of the popular STi7100, including the add-on features like an integrated Ethernet controller and MAC, 64MByte flash support and 256MByte DDR interface.

Meeting expectations
"We are happy with our partnership with Proview has led to the rapid development of high-quality STB. This adheres to cost constraints of the Brazilian market," said Thierry Tingaud, corporate VP and general manager, emerging markets region, ST. "This is a good example of responding the needs of emerging markets with the unique blend of market knowledge, technology and manufacturing techniques, as well as advanced application engineering support," he added.

SBTVD is a DTV standard made through the combined efforts of the Brazilian government, Brazilian universities and telecommunications companies, from the ISDB-T digital TV standard used in Japan.

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