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MARKET & TECHNOLOGY

MARKET & TECHNOLOGY TRENDS The Forward March of Technology at IFA Micronas announces single-chip solution for Full HD 1080p Flat-Panel TVs The VCT-PremiumTM supports worldwide trends towards Full HD 1080p TV and expandability to 120 Hz and new DTV broadcasting formats such as H.264 Micronas, a leading supplier of innovative application-specific IC system solutions for consumer electronics, has announced the launch of the VCT-Premium – the third generation of Micronas’ widely deployed VCT-family of singlechip flat-panel TV processors. Major OEMs all over the world have chosen the VCT-platform for their LCD and plasma TVs. Now, the TV market is moving to Full HD 1080p panels, and the VCT-Premium offers the industry’s highest level of integration, thus allowing TV- OEMs significant system cost reduction at state-of-the-art quality to address this important market segment. The single-chip solution provides the complete electronics platform for a Full HD 1080p TV featuring integrated audio, video, Teletext, OSD, and controllerrelated functionalities, even memory and program ROM, and a dual input port HDMI receiver. The VCT-Premium has been engineered for maximum picture and sound quality. The chip offers stateof-the-art color processing: in addition to standard color space typically used for PAL or NTSC systems, it can accept content with the new extended color space (xvYCC) and expands the color formats to work with Wide Color Gamut panels. TV-set designers can custom-map colors to their display panel of choice, thus insuring the TV delivers the best possible color. The VCT-Premium further improves picture quality by dealing with noise associated with digital TV. MPEG video coding can introduce ‘mosquito noise’ and ‘block noise’ to the video signal. The VCT-Premium eliminates this noise with advanced algorithms that reduce the digital noise effect while maintaining the picture sharpness. “Micronas has extended its VCT platform to accommodate the worldwide trend towards -Full HD 1080p,” explains Thomas Hilpert, Product Marketing Manager TV, at Micronas. “And we made sure that the VCT-Premium is future-proof. The new H.264 format is a great market opportunity for TV-set makers, but not all markets are adopting it at the same rate. Our solution allows TV-set designers to add off-the-shelf MPEG2/H.264 decoder chips for the respective markets, without the expense of including it in all sets.” With the adoption of Blu-ray and HD-DVD media, the industry took a big step forward – both formats can deliver movies exactly as filmed, at 24 frames per second (fps). The VCT-Premium supports this 24p mode – showing true cinematic video quality. And the system can even go one step further with its companion chip, the Micronas FRC 94xyM. The FRC94xyM, a fourthgeneration truD Full HD 120, smoothly increases the frame rate from 24 fps to as fast as 120 fps at Full HD resolution. It generates new intermediate frames so that on-screen motion is smooth and free of motion-blurring and film judder. TV manufacturers can offer a standard TV model with VCT-Premium and, by adding the FRC 94xyM, an advanced TV model, both based on one core system. Movies aren’t even half the fun without great sound. Micronas has leveraged its expertise in audio processing to equip the VCT-Premium with an extensive portfolio of audio technologies that deliver bestin-class sound. As part of Micronas meloDTM audio processing technologies, the VCT-Premium features a parametric equalizer, which let system designers match sound output to the chosen speaker system. Micronas’ night listening mode, meloDTM NIGHT+, reduces loud sections and enhances quiet passages to create a pleasant entertainment experience in sensitive listening environments. Besides the QFP package with integrated DRAM, the VCT- Premium also comes in a BGA package, allowing connection to external DDR memory. Samples of the VCT-Premium, evaluation boards, development tools and a comprehensive software package are available now. Hall 1.1, stand 135 Consumer spend on Digital Entertainment set to grow by 50% By 2011, consumers will be spending in excess of 50% more on entertainment content than they did last year, according to a new industry report by Understanding & Solutions. The upsurge of content, combined with much-improved delivery infrastructures, is increasingly allowing consumers to choose when, where and how they consume their entertainment. Recent industry activity and the take-up of home video, TV, music and gaming across multiple delivery platforms are already laying the foundations for significant growth in the sector, particular through: • Home Video and TV: electronic sell-through and online VoD, linear programming, TV based video-on-demand (VoD), mobile TV and theatrical box office • Music: online, mobile, and subscription radio • Gaming: online and mobile gaming “Going forward, we’ll see the highest percentage growth coming from mobile and online,” says Alison Casey, Business Director: Content and Services, Understanding & Solutions, “though in volume terms, both will remain relatively small scale until after 2011, when compared with established platforms such as broadcast Pay TV. More importantly, multiple formats will co-exist, as different delivery methods and platforms will suit different consumers in different situations. With content moving seamlessly from mobile to online to TV, the challenge for the industry will be to ensure revenues aren’t cannibalised, as consumers will only want to pay for their content once.” “Although these new platforms bring new challenges,” continues Casey, “we’re going to see digital delivery outgrow all other aspects of home entertainment, helping to increase the global content industry’s revenues by over 8% per year (CAGR) through to 2011.” If the process is managed effectively, content holders will yield additional revenue streams from both new and catalogue content, though formats will have to evolve. In the mobile sector, for example, it will be short form, re-purposed content that will be most successful. “This new multi-platform world is creating a revenue shift,” says Casey. “Theatre owners, retailers and broadcasters will continue to be important, but the new media infrastructure providers – including telcos, ISPs, mobile operators and social networking services – will begin to take a larger slice of the revenues.” However, of all the different players vying for a position in the delivery of digital entertainment, it is the existing Pay TV operators that are in the strongest position. Unlike the mobile operators and telcos, content is already their primary focus and this will be a key lever for consumer uptake. Although illegal video and music files account for a large proportion of content downloading, new, legitimate services have created viable revenue streams. Online, mobile and Pay TV are beginning to provide a platform for legal content delivery, often generating legitimate revenues in emerging markets for the first time. “This is particularly true for mobile,” says Casey, “and by 2011 approximately 75% of all mobile subscribers will live outside the USA, Western Europe and Japan. Historically, territories such as China and India have generated small revenues from packaged media sales, and the new digital revenues in these markets could surpass those generated from physical media.” 6 IFA International • Saturday, 1 st September 2007

MARKET & TECHNOLOGY TRENDS Seeing Life ... In 3D Through your TV!! Interview / John Reder, EMEA Business Development Manager Front Projection Texas Instruments DLP that time frame. We are now able to put out both the left and right image, which are 100 or 120 Hertz, in that time frame as well. So you don’t get any of the flicker or motion lag that you have seen on some of the slower 3D systems. What can we expect to see in terms of productions? The most significant technology demonstration on show at IFA 2007 for Texas Instruments DLP is 3D capability... We asked John Reder, EMEA Business Manager, Front Projection for Texas Instruments to give us the run-down... You may be familiar with what we have been doing in 3D ... doing DLP cinema for a couple of years already. We have now been able to adapt this technology into a television product which is currently shipping in the US by Samsung and Mitsubishi. You have probably seen 3D technology demonstrations for years in trade shows, and most of them did not come across well. But this is really quite good. If you have seen the 3D in cinema, this is every bit as good as that. It really brings a lot of realism to 3D. In terms of television, we will have that available at IFA for people to look at. It does require that you wear glasses but we have restyled them to make them much more acceptable for wearing. We are also working across various manufacturers for them to improve the glasses further. Can you explain this technically? To display 3D, you need to be able to display both left and right images (stereoscopic). And because our chips are so fast, we are able to do that and squeeze it into the same frame time that we had before. In the past, we were able to run at 50 or 60 Hertz depending on the region we were in, we were able to put up all the information in Right now they are starting to ship in the US in the form of a TV. Samsung actually converted the entire line to 3D, and now it is the number one DLP TV in terms of sales in the US. Mitsubishi have their higher end product line that is now all 3D as well. What products are available for people to actually watch in 3D? Right now that is fairly limited. There are some films that are available in DVD form. We are working with the content providers, both gaming and movie, to make more content available to consumers. We are at the forefront of this and we are trying to work with the content providers so they can catch up with the technology that is out there. In the past, 3D displays were quite high end and were used only in professional or commercial type applications. Now that they can move mainstream very cost-effectively, I think it took the content providers by surprise and so we are working with them to enable that. What’s new in DLP chip technology? I think the biggest innovations are the projectors that are coming out right now that include “Brilliant Colour Technology”. That is starting to migrate into more and more products, and we will be able to summarize that for you at the show. But the technology creates saturated greens, reds and blues, which is why many of these products also include secondary colours. So you get a much richer palette to work with, and you can really see that on the screens. DLP products (projectors, home theatre all-in-one boxes, DVD players, small LED projectors) are available on Hall 26, stand 218 IFA International • Saturday, 1 st September 2007 7

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