MADISON, Wis.– If you want to know the global TV trends in 2013, look no further than what MediaTek has up its sleeve. The bellwether of the consumer electronics industry today is no longer either Sony or Panasonic. That title now belongs to the Taiwan-based consumer chip company.
MediaTek, backed up by a large customer base including both handset and TV OEMs/ODMs throughout Asia, is today in a rare position: other than Samsung, perhaps no other company is positioned to speak authoritatively on how things developed in handsets will dictate features and functions that must go into a new generation of digital TVs.
EE Times met with MediaTek President Ching-Jiang Hsieh and saw some of the demonstrations at the company’s private suite during the recent International Consumer Electronics Show.
Eight hot features, identified and pitched by MediaTek, are likely to drive global consumer system designs in 2013. They include: multi-screens in the living room, DIAL, 4K x 2K, HTML5, Near Field Communications (NFC), fast boot time, quad-core/higher GPU and HEVC (H.265).
MediaTek President C.J. Hsiehat the company's private suite during the recent CES.
During the interview, Hsieh stressed how quickly the HEVC codec will become a critical element in smartphones, tablets and TVs. He also said that 4K x 2K--an emerging ultra-high resolution standard--is already a “very important marketing tool for branded customers.
Hsieh also laid out that smart TV is still evolving, requiring OEMs and ODMs to follow multiple routes to get there. These include a smart TV dongle, a smart TV set-top, Linux-based smart TV and fundamental support for HTML 5, he said.
Among the plethora of new features, one area MediaTek is very keen on pushing is the multi-screen scenario in the living room.
MediaTek claimed an industry’s first by integrating Miracast-certified Wi-Fi display technology with NFC to seamlessly connect a smart TV with the latest MediaTek quad-core smartphone platform. “With a simple tap of the device, it is possible to wirelessly stream HD quality video and other multimedia content from mobile and other devices onto big screen HDTVs without connecting through an access point,” according to the company.
Interpolation would be required to get normal SDTV or HDTV content onto UHDTV sets, certainly. But I don't think this creates more "resolution." Because the information content has not changed. So you get a smooth-as-glass image, but no more actual detail.
There are algorithms to enhance such interpolated images, edges mainly, so perhaps that could be called enhanced resolution. Although it's manufactured, not real.
Netflix-Samsung UHDTV collaboration might be a sign of better proliferation of UHDTV. A partnership between TV makers and movies production company will certainly give a strong push.
There is always a solution to get better resolution - interpolation. I'm sure various TV makers are looking into it if they aren't already using the technology to improve the picture quality.
Thanks to MediaTek, we just might finally get some reasonable smart TVs. Most of what I read in this piece sounds great.
But I'm with Rick.
I don't so much dispute that some handheld gadget to TV content sharing is a good idea, for certain content. What I utterly fail to understand is the notion that TV manufacturers would capitulate to Apple or anyone else for a "discovery and launch" of Internet TV content.
As to DIAL per se, I suppose it's intent is to avoid having to use that short range 60 GHz "wireless HDMI" link, between handheld gadget and smart TV. So it allows the TV to initiate the same Internet sessions as the handheld, slaved to the handheld, but not by a simple uncompressed high capacity video/audio link. So the Internet strteams go directly to the TV from the broadband modem and WiFi (or other) internal network link.
Mostly to that, I say bah. Just design the smart TV smartly. Do that discovery from the TV. Use some imagination and creativity.
DIAL doesn't sound compelling to me, but I can imagine someday we will get to easy and interesting ways to share related content on devices in proximity in the living room and the public square (with digital signage and handsets).
Meanwhile, it looks like Taiwan has its Broadcom in Mediatek.
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