New chip points the way toward handheld TV
October 29, 2004 The age of ubiquitous media got a little closer this week when Texas Instruments (TI) announced it is developing achip that will offer live, broadcast quality digital TV on a mobile phone. Code-named "Hollywood," the chip will receive live digital TV broadcasts using new television infrastructure that is being developed for mobile phones, doing for mobile phones what HDTV did for home TVs. It will capture broadcast signals and allow subscribers to access different types of content including live television, pay-per view, interactive TV, packaged services for sporting events, music videos, menu/guide systems and more whilst on the go.
"Hollywood" builds on TI's current capabilities in the converging wireless and consumer electronics markets, including high-quality streamed video content on 2.5G and 3G handsets via its OMAP multimedia processors for crisp, real time viewing.
"TI«s new «Hollywood« digital TV chip will combine the two biggest consumer electronics inventions of our time - the television and the cell phone," said Gilles Delfassy, TI Senior Vice President and General Manager for TI«s Wireless Terminals Business Unit. "One by one, the industry«s most exciting consumer electronics are being integrated into wireless handsets, allowing consumers to get their news and entertainment whenever and wherever they want. With this new chip on the cell phone, users will enjoy digital, high-quality TV in real-time."
TI's "Hollywood" digital TV chip will support newly established and open digital TV broadcast standards for the wireless industry. While no single standard will be used worldwide, TI believes that the most prevalent standards will be those that are open and non-proprietary, including Digital Video Broadcasting - Handheld (DVB-H), which was developed for Europe and is expected to extend to North America, and the Japanese specification, Integrated Services Digital Broadcasting - Terrestrial (ISDB-T). "Hollywood" will support DVB-H and ISDB-T.
Dedicated wireless networks supporting these standards will feature high-quality live broadcast TV (24-30 frames per second) paired with full audio to offer a more robust mobile viewing experience versus the one-to-15-frames-per-second streaming capability offered via cellular.
TI expects to provide samples of the "Hollywood" chip to customers in 2006. TI's "Hollywood" offering will also include all needed software for television signal processing. The associated OMAP processor-based development platform will allow handset manufacturers to create customized user interfaces, enhancing the consumer experience. This is expected to enable manufacturers to launch products in conjunction with the first mobile digital TV infrastructure mass deployments in 2007. Field trials are currently underway in several regions, including the U.S., Europe and Japan.
For more information about mobile digital TV market trends and video demonstrations, see http://www.ti.com/wireless