SUNNYVALE, Calif. -- A consortium of chip makers and OEMs here today announced the first specifications for a new and emerging high-definition multimedia interface standard. The technology is geared for a new class of consumer electronic devices and other products.
The recently-formed consortium, dubbed the High Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI) Founders, include Hitachi, Matsushita Electric (Panasonic), Philips, Silicon Image, Sony, Thomson, and Toshiba.
The companies have hammered out the version 0.9 standard, which defines the next-generation digital interface for consumer electronics. The specification is now available for review at the group's Web site: http://www.hdmi.org.
Designed to usher in the new era of digital entertainment, HDMI combines high-definition video and multi-channel audio in a single digital interface with a bandwidth of up to 5-gigabits-per-second.
The benefits include uncompressed digital quality, fewer cables and a small, user-friendly connector. HDMI also builds upon the success and is backward compatible with the Digital Visual Interface (DVI) standard.
"HDMI offers a viable and attractive solution to the current HDTV stalemate," stated Wanda Meloni, president of M2 Research. "HDMI is the first video and audio standard to amass support from the entire CE value chain, from content providers to system operators to CE manufacturers," Meloni said.
The companies have outlined the following features of HDMI: the integration of audio by using auxiliary packetized data transfer technology; designing the 15-mm, 19-pin HDMI interface for consumer-electronic devices; and incorporating High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection (HDCP).