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Broadband STB boasts security, power-saving features

Posted: 15 Sep 2011 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:semiconductor? electronics? set-top-box? broadband?

Semiconductor company STMicroelectronics NV (ST) expands its set-top box (STB) offering by releasing the details of the high-performance broadband STB system-on-chip IC for tomorrow's fully-connected home.

The chip, part of ST's latest-generation home entertainment platform, promises to deliver energy efficiency, high performance as well as security features and support for open-source environments. With greater processing power than many set-top box ICs, the new chip features value-added services such as state-of-the-art gaming, Over The Top (OTT) video playback via third-parties over the Internet and new app stores providing content and applications; and secure high-definition streaming to all connected screens such as tablets, smartphones, PCs and TVs throughout the home.

"Consumers want to see the dream of a truly connected home become a reality. The connected home means seamlessly streaming content across our TV set, our tablet or our laptop with the highest performance and speed, while being able to access operators' app stores as well as open-market stores, said Philippe Lambinet, senior executive vice president and general manager of home entertainment and display group. "Our latest generation of high-end set-top-box chips will act as the multimedia center of our home, connecting all of our devices and allowing the greatest user experience, such as 3D program guides and full motion 3DTV, OTT video and gaming from 3rd-parties over the Internet or from operators and full, fast access to a world of applications."

Broadband STB chip

ST offers a high-performance broadband STB system-on-chip IC which supports advanced multimedia, streaming, and server capabilities.

Code-named Orly, the new IC features an advanced, energy-efficient multicore ARM Cortex-A9 MPCore processor, which has unique capabilities enabling optimized playback of content and applications through software environments such as Android, Qt and the HTML5 open Internet standard. Orly will also support powerful Flash-based gaming, media and data-driven applications that take advantage of an optimized version of Adobe AIR and Flash Player. Dedicated high-performance processing engines will deliver outstanding graphics rendering, multimedia experience, and security robustness.

Anticipating many opportunities for Orly in home server and networking products and distributing content to a multitude of connected appliances, ST has leveraged its partnerships with leading security vendors to provide support for the most advanced conditional-access security and digital rights management (DRM).

Within the Orly project, ST has also assembled important supporting ecosystems, which ST's Lambinet says are becoming more complex as markets for content and services continue to evolve. Orly will provide the flexibility to choose from a wide variety of middleware stacks, which connect components and their applications via computer software, to deliver the best possible user experience, filter data for privacy protection, provide interaction with other services, as well as offer assistance in handling secure transactions. Orly is able to support Rich Internet Applications (RIAs) on platforms such as Android, taking advantage of Adobe runtimes. Since web applications contain many characteristics of desktop application software, users can navigate the web or play online games directly from their STB. Support for Adobe AIR will also allow users to download standalone Flash based applications via TV App Stores.

IHS iSuppli anticipates the market for apps delivered to connected TVs to grow to include millions of consumers over the next decade.

Samples of Orly are now available to key customers and will be in full production in 2012.

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