Microsoft Expands IPTV Technology Ecosystem as Worldwide Deployments Accelerate
At the 2007 National Association of Broadcasters conference (NAB2007), the world’s largest electronic media show, Microsoft Corp. announced additional top technology suppliers providing technologies that support the Microsoft® TV Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) Edition software platform, which is being deployed by several leading service providers worldwide. The announcement illustrates the accelerating growth of the IPTV industry and Microsoft’s commitment to work with a broad range of solutions providers to ensure ongoing industry innovation while allowing service providers the flexibility to choose from a variety of technologies to deploy IPTV services.
The announcement features new Microsoft IPTV partners or solutions in the following categories:
• Server processors. AMD and Intel Corporation provide leading chipset solutions for server and storage infrastructures for the IPTV Edition ecosystem. Their processors are key to the scalable deployment of live and on-demand TV applications.
• Encoding solutions. Grass Valley standard definition encoders from Thomson support the MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 standard used in IPTV Edition.
• Set-top boxes. Pirelli Broadband Solutions will provide set-top boxes supporting Microsoft TV IPTV Edition. Pirelli’s portfolio of hybrid decoders brings together IPTV and digital terrestrial TV in one multimedia platform, enabling a wide range of content bundles to be secured through conditional access system standards and digital rights management technologies. Pirelli’s set-top boxes are based on single-chip technology and support legacy and new encoding standards such as H.264 and VC-1 at both standard and high definition. Pirelli set-top boxes can be equipped with hard drives of various storage capacities, providing additional capabilities such as local video recording, recorded-services playback, live TV pause, and time-shift recording.
• Servers and storage. Sun Microsystems Inc.’s Sun Fire x64 servers are the newest carrier-class servers to have been tested against the high-performance IPTV platforms from Microsoft.
“With IPTV deployments now happening in most major regions around the world, the market is entering a new phase,” said Vince Vittore, senior analyst at Yankee Group. “The addition of these new technology companies to Microsoft’s IPTV ecosystem is a clear indicator that the IPTV industry has reached a new level of maturity. Service providers will benefit by having more technology options and the flexibility to deploy a solution that best meets their specific business objectives and the needs of their subscribers.”
“Microsoft’s commitment to the IPTV industry is not only to deliver a comprehensive end-to-end IPTV Edition software platform, but to constantly ensure that industry-leading solutions in all areas can work with our platform to enhance its features and functionalities,” said Joe Seidel, director of the Worldwide Partner Ecosystem for the Microsoft TV Division at Microsoft. “With the relationships we are announcing today, we add another layer of support for our service provider customers as they continue to deploy IPTV services to consumers worldwide.”
This host of new IPTV ecosystem partners joins a broad group of leading hardware and software providers already working with Microsoft TV to make IPTV a reality. These include systems integrator and infrastructure provider Alcatel-Lucent; set-top box manufacturers Cisco Systems Inc. (Scientific Atlanta, a Cisco company), Motorola Inc., Philips and Tatung Co.; chip manufacturers Sigma Design Inc. and STMicroelectronics; server solution providers HP and IBM Corp.; and encoder providers Cisco Systems (Scientific Atlanta, a Cisco company), Harmonic Inc., Motorola and TANDBERG Television.
Microsoft TV IPTV Edition continues to improve its standing in the industry with deployments under way with nine leading service providers and trials with seven additional providers, representing a footprint across 15 countries on four continents. The IPTV Edition platform will be demonstrated at Microsoft’s booth at NAB2007 (South Hall 1, Stand SL3213, Las Vegas Convention Center).
About the Microsoft TV Platform
The award-winning Microsoft TV platform is a family of software solutions that help TV service providers create and deliver new digital TV services that delight consumers. Designed to help cable providers and telecommunications companies derive more value from their digital video and network infrastructure investments, the Microsoft TV family supports a full range of services including interactive program guides, digital video recording, high-definition TV, on-demand programming and Internet Protocol TV (IPTV) services. The Microsoft TV platform works across a full range of set-top boxes and TV devices. More information about Microsoft TV can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/tv.
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.
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