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Showtime Networks To Deliver Smithsonian Channel in High Definition MPEG-4 Using Motorola Technology


Programmer chooses Motorola’s field-proven MPEG-4 processing technology to deliver HD content

SAN DIEGO, Calif. – Motorola (NYSE:MOT) today announced that it will provide a high-definition (HD) MPEG-4 Advanced Video Coding (AVC) encoding system for Smithsonian Channel, which plans to broadcast all programming in HD. Motorola’s Home and Networks Mobility business will provide an MPEG-4 encoding system which compresses, encrypts, modulates, and receives the HD signals within a single integrated transmission system.

The new Smithsonian Channel system will employ Motorola’s SE-5100 MPEG-4 AVC HD encoders to encode video content into the MPEG-4 AVC format for distribution over satellite. Smithsonian Channel’s cable or telco affiliates will be able to install Motorola’s new DSR-6050 Digital Satellite Receiver-Transcoder at their headends to receive the signals and, in some cases, convert them to MPEG-2 for distribution. The solution provides greater flexibility and efficiency for programmers by allowing the broadcast of a single MPEG-4 HD signal for each service sent to cable operator and service provider customers. By supporting both MPEG-4 and MPEG-2 outputs, the DSR-6050 enables programmers to transition to the more efficient MPEG-4 format, maintain the quality of their signal and support the transmission format preference of their affiliates.

“Smithsonian Channel is bringing viewers an extended portfolio of compelling content including; documentaries, events, and short subject explorations of the major scientific, cultural, and historical events, that will be only enhanced by it being photographed and telecast in HD,” said Tom Hayden, general manager, Smithsonian Channel,

“Motorola’s MPEG-4 solution allows us to deliver this programming with the superb video quality that really does the content justice,” said Jim Occhiuto, vice president, engineering, Showtime Networks. “The system’s flexibility and efficiency will allow us to roll out even more HD channels during the coming years.”

“Motorola technology is enabling industry migration from MPEG-2 to MPEG-4 by allowing programmers and operators to deliver more HD content by maximizing bandwidth efficiency, resulting in greater choice for consumers,” said Doug Means corporate vice president and general manager of Motorola’s IP Video Solutions Group “Motorola is a proven video leader and we are proud to be working with Showtime to deliver high-quality, high-definition content.”

The announcement follows HBO and Starz’s recent selection of Motorola’s MPEG-4 AVC platform to deliver their HD programming. As a long-time leader in HD digital compression systems, Motorola has deployed hundreds of HD encoding systems in the MPEG-2 standard. The MPEG-4 AVC technology has been optimized for today’s content requirements, handling both 1920 x 1080i and 1280 x 720p resolutions. Showtime Networks is planning to begin distributing the Smithsonian Channel in HD MPEG-4 in Q4 2007.

Motorola is the acknowledged leader in video network solutions, having deployed more than 2,500 digital headends in both MPEG-2 and MPEG-4. This leadership extends to IPTV headends and cable video networks. As a result, more programmers in North America deploy Motorola satellite video delivery network solutions than any other solution. Motorola is also a world leader in digital set tops, having shipped more than 60 million cable set tops and more than two million IPTV set tops.


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