HITACHI, MATSUSHITA, PHILIPS, SILICON IMAGE, SONY, THOMSON AND TOSHIBA FORM WORKING GROUP TO DEFINE DIGITAL CONNECTIVITY SPECIFICATION FOR AUDIO/VIDEO PRODUCTS|
16 April, 2002
Leading global consumer electronics manufacturers are united in developing this digital interface for future products such as digital televisions, DVD players, set-top boxes and other digital A/V products. HDMI offers significant advantages over existing analog A/V interfaces. Its uncompressed, digital format transports high-definition video and multi-channel audio without processing or degrading them. By combining audio with video on one cable, HDMI offers a convenient connection alternative to the maze of existing analog A/V cables. The new format uses a small, easy-to-use connector, suitable for portable products like digital camcorders. HDMI also ensures compatibility between products. Capitalizing on the interoperability standards created in CEA (EIA/CEA-861x), HDMI assures that the best video format is always sent from source to display. In addition, HDMI will support many capabilities of the AV.link interoperability protocol, popular in Europe.
Major motion picture producers, as well as satellite and cable companies, have applauded and welcomed High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection (HDCP) for Digital Visual Interface (DVI), an existing industry standard. The key underlying technology in DVI will be the basis for the new HDMI specification. Developed by Intel, with contributions from Silicon Image, HDCP for HDMI will be available to HDMI adopters.
Andrew G. Setos, president of engineering for the Fox Group, stated, "It is basic market dynamics that as mechanisms are introduced which will protect digital content, consumers will find their choices of content ever increasing. HDMI with HDCP is just such a mechanism, providing designers with a cost effective, protected digital solution to replace legacy component analog connections."
Jerry Pierce, senior vice president, technology at Universal Pictures, added, "We are encouraged to see these technology manufacturers endorsing a protected baseband digital interconnect specification that appeals to consumers and provides us the ability to protect our content with HDCP. HDMI/HDCP is one of the key technologies that makes D-VHS possible."
"As a strong supporter of DVI, we believe the formation of this working group is an important step toward delivering consumers a more robust selection of high-definition content and digital receiving devices," said David Baylor, executive vice president, DIRECTV, Inc. "By delivering signals in an uncompressed format, HDMI enables the support of user interfaces in electronic program guides and interactive features for high-definition television, all of which benefit the consumer."
Dave Kummer, senior vice president of engineering at EchoStar, stated, "We are pleased to see that the HDMI working group has formed to define the first uncompressed digital audiovisual interface for consumer electronics devices. EchoStar was among the first system operators to understand the many benefits of an uncompressed digital video interface for our DISH Network customers."
"Leading players in all links of the entertainment delivery value chain have agreed on the HDMI specification as the means to provide consumers with a new digital entertainment experience. This is an incredible milestone that will revolutionize home theater as we know it today," noted David Lee, president and chief executive officer of Silicon Image. "HDMI will feature our high-bandwidth Transition-Minimized Differential Signaling (TMDSTM) technology for audio and video. This technology soon will enable consumers to view uncompressed digital video with integrated audio in the comfort of their own living room. We are pleased to be at the forefront in bringing the highest quality, pure-digital experience to consumers."
HDMI will soon be openly available to the industry under reasonable and non-discriminatory terms.
Hitachi, Ltd., headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, is one of the world's leading global electronics companies, with fiscal 2000 (ended March 31, 2001) consolidated sales of 8,417 billion yen ($67.9 billion*). The company manufactures and markets a wide range of products, including computers, semiconductors, consumer products and power and industrial equipment. For more information on Hitachi, Ltd., please visit Hitachi's Web site at http://global.hitachi.com
About Matsushita (Panasonic)
Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd., best known for its Panasonic, National, Technics and Quasar brand names, is a worldwide leader in the development and manufacture of electronics products for a wide range of consumer, business and industrial needs. Based in Osaka, Japan, the company recorded consolidated sales of US$61.45 billion for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2001. In addition to the Tokyo and other Japanese stock exchanges (6752), Matsushita's shares are also listed on the Amsterdam, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, New York, Pacific (NYSE/PCX: MC) and Paris stock exchanges. For more information, visit the Matsushita web site at http://www.panasonic.co.jp/global/top.html
Royal Philips Electronics of the Netherlands is one of the world's biggest electronics companies and Europe's largest, with sales of EUR 32.3 billion in 2001. It is a global leader in color television sets, lighting, electric shavers, medical diagnostic imaging and patient monitoring, and one-chip TV products. Its 189,000 employees in more than 60 countries are active in the areas of lighting, consumer electronics, domestic appliances, components, semiconductors, and medical systems. Philips is quoted on the NYSE (symbol: PHG), London, Frankfurt, Amsterdam and other stock exchanges. News from Philips is located at www.news.philips.com
About Silicon Image
Headquartered in Sunnyvale, Calif., Silicon Image, Inc. designs, develops and markets multi-gigabit semiconductor and system solutions for a variety of communications applications demanding high-bandwidth capability. With its proprietary Multi-layer Serial Link (MSLTM) architecture, Silicon Image is well positioned for leadership in multiple mass markets including PCs, consumer electronics, storage and networking. Currently, Silicon Image leads the global PC/display arena with its innovative digital interconnect technology, and is now emerging as a leading player in the storage industry--offering robust, high-bandwidth storage semiconductors and systems. For more information on Silicon Image, visit www.siliconimage.com
Sony Corporation is a leading manufacturer of audio, video, game, communications and information technology products for the consumer and professional markets. With its music, pictures, computer entertainment and on-line businesses, Sony is uniquely positioned to be a leading personal broadband entertainment company in the world. Sony recorded consolidated annual sales of nearly $60 billion for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2001. Sony's Home Page URL: www.world.sony.com
With sales of 10.5 billion Euros (U.S. $ 9.3 billion) in 2001 and 73,000 employees in more than 30 countries, Thomson multimedia (Paris Euronext: 18453) (NYSE: TMS), provides a wide range of video (and enabling) technologies, systems, finished products and services to consumers and professionals in the entertainment and media industries. To advance and enable the digital media transition, Thomson multimedia has five principal activities: Digital Media Solutions, Displays and Components, Consumer Products, Patents and Licensing, and New Media Services. The company distributes its products under the THOMSON, RCA and TECHNICOLOR brand names.
Toshiba Corporation is a leader in information and communications systems, electronic components, consumer products and power systems. The company's integration of these wide-ranging capabilities assures its position as an innovator in advanced components, products and systems. Toshiba has 188,000 employees worldwide and annual sales of over US$47 billion. Visit Toshiba's website at: www.toshiba.co.jp/index.htm
This news release contains forward-looking information within the meaning of federal securities regulations. These forward-looking statements include statements related to the development and anticipated completion of the HDMI specification, its anticipated properties and benefits, the anticipated ability of the companies issuing this news release to develop and supply products adhering to the HDMI specification, and the anticipated timing of availability of the HDMI specification. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, including those described from time to time in filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) by the companies issuing this news release, that could cause the actual results to differ materially from those anticipated by these forward-looking statements. In particular, the proposed HDMI standard may not be finalized or adopted when expected or at all, these companies may not be able to develop and supply products adhering to the HDMI standard, or any such products may not be accepted by the market, or produce revenue, margin or profit, and consumer electronic manufacturers, motion picture producers and system operators may prefer competing technologies, including alternative technologies or specifications that may be developed. The companies issuing this news release assume no obligation to update this forward-looking information.
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