Breakthrough in Media Freedom: Apple TV Functionality to Be Available on an OEM Basis

Wednesday, September 5th, 2007 

C2Micro and Orb Networks demonstrate next generation reference design for the ConnectedHome

EMERYVILLE, Calif. — C2 Microsystems and Orb Networks, two leaders in digital home entertainment, announced a new reference platform that delivers digital media from the internet or a consumer’s PC, to the TV. The open design is expected to be licensed on an OEM basis by set top box, Cable, Satellite and Media providers and deliver consumer TV and media options far beyond those offered by Apple TV or Sling Media.

The integrated reference platform connects the C2 Micro-powered set top box, embedded media center system, networked portable media player or networked TV, with a PC running the Orb Media Platform. The result is seamless access on the TV to users’ personal media, as well as branded content coming from the home PC or the Internet.

In addition, providers and operators can configure a service where the TV signal — digital, pay or satellite — can be directed from the STB to the PC, leveraging all of Orb’s media management and consumption features, providing the maximum flexibility for the user, including the ability to watch the TV signal on a remote computer or mobile phone.

“We have brought the best of our technologies together to offer the OEM and service operators a breakthrough in cost/performance. Now users can consume ALL their media — branded content and personal content — in a single, friendly system”, said Herve Utheza, VP & GM, TV Properties at Orb Networks. “And Orb’s advanced sharing and media management features are unmatched in the industry, making it easy for you to send to Grandma, on her TV screen, the pictures of the kids.”

“The MFB reference platform is capable of handling media decoding, encoding, transcoding and trans-rating at a fraction of the cost of the incumbent designs,” said Jinxiang (Gene) Liu, Ph.D. CEO from C2 Microsystems. “We can now offer extremely high performance for designing PayTV or retail products capable to serve, playback and stream all sorts of media. Orb brings to this offering two key pieces of solution: future proofing for the life of the hardware product, as Internet formats will continue to evolve, and a simple media management solution for the consumer to pick the media they want, and enjoy it on the screens they like,” he added.

The MFB reference platform is a programmable solution with extremely high density which offers video processing computing at a fraction of the CPU cycles, thus allowing for high end transcoding, post-processing and decoding / encoding capabilities. It has already shipped in retail products and has already been chosen by leading CE and STB manufacturers around the world.

“We believe that hardware manufacturers are the ideal people to integrate best-of-breed reference platforms,” added Utheza. “We saw in the MFB platform a very powerful design which can cost reduce existing designs faster and accelerate the delivery of the ConnectedHome in both retail and PayTV environments,” he concluded.

Orb software is a free application which consumers use to manage and access their favorite media from any screens, allowing for more media consumption, targeted media up-sell, and more.

How Orb Works

Orb is a free media sharing application. Download it to the PC where you have all your media, and then stream any of the media that is on your PC — or anything from the internet — to another computer, mobile phone, or TV via C2 MFB/STB reference platform. Download it today at http://www.orb.com/download_orb