Vendors Push Wireless HD Standard

By Ed Sutherland

October 31, 2006

Consumer electronics companies devise a plan for wireless high-definition technology.

Can wireless technology reduce the mountain of cables and connections found in the modern digital living room? Some are hoping so.

A group of world-leading consumer electronics giants has joined with a startup chip designer to promote WirelessHD.

The companies involved include Sony, Toshiba, Panasonic, Samsung, LG Electronics and LTD. Also part of the venture is high-speed wireless chip designer SiBeam.

The standard is necessary due to the growing use and availability of high-definition content, as well as the wide array of digital devices, such as DVD players, portable audio, video consoles and HD television.

As part of its goal to increase support for its specification, the group has issued a call for interest with hopes other companies will come aboard, said John Marshall, chairman of WirelessHD and vice president of marketing and business at SiBeam.

Worldwide sales of devices that include high-speed audio-visual interfaces are expected to grow from just 60 million units this year to 495 million units in 2009, according to In-Stat.

Such growth has created a need to "simply and flexibly connect to the highest quality, high-definition displays and consumer electronics systems," according to a statement.

The specification will use the unlicensed 60Ghz frequency and first appear in HDTVs.

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