STMicroelectronics Achieves EuroDOCSIS 2.0 Certification for HD Set-Top Box Reference Design

Thursday, December 17th, 2009
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Production-ready hardware platform delivers advanced multi-service functionality

GENEVA — STMicroelectronics (NYSE: STM), a world leader in set-top box (STB) chips, has achieved EuroDOCSIS 2.0 certification for its production-ready reference design for feature-rich cable set-top boxes (STBs) using the company’s STi7141 system-on-chip. As the first to achieve this single-chip mandatory certification for cable high-definition STBs supporting Internet connection, ST has moved to dramatically shorten time-to-market for STB vendors by streamlining acceptance testing for new products that are based on ST reference designs.

The chip at the heart of this reference design, the STi7141, was launched in January 2009. Its arrival made ST the first to integrate a DOCSIS cable modem and HDTV MPEG-4 decoder, creating a single chip supporting HDTV, interactive services, broadband Internet and Digital Video Recorder (DVR) functions such as pausing live TV.

“The certification of the world’s first single-chip solution from STMicroelectronics will bring a whole new level of integration along with interactivity in set-top boxes for cable operators,” said Malcolm Taylor, Managing Director of Cable Europe Labs. “This new approved platform will be a key enabler for new services blending internet and traditional cable content.”

“Beyond its early contributions to the specification of the STi7141, Thomson has developed an in-depth knowledge of the new device, has completed the set-top box development and certification processes, has achieved EuroDOCSIS qualification, and will now start shipping to pilot cable MSOs as early as Q1 2010,” said Georges Laplanche, Senior Vice-President, Connect Division at Thomson. “This powerful dual-processor SoC enables advanced interactive services thanks to the integrated channel-bonding DOCSIS modem and a remarkably low power consumption. Powered by the STi7141, Thomson’s latest generation of HD-DVRs and HD STBs offer a unique set of compelling features to the cable MSOs and strengthen Thomson’s leading position on the cable market.”

“We welcome this achievement, as we believe it is an important step forward in helping us provide a very efficient, highly integrated interactive next-generation cable platform,” said Francois Pogodalla, CEO at Advanced Digital Broadcast. “This is why we have been collaborating with ST for some time to integrate the STi7141 into our product roadmap, supporting various configurations such as MHP (Multimedia Home Platform) and OpenTV. Congratulations to ST!”

“As the first to market with a EuroDOCSIS 2.0-certified H.264 cable STB reference design, ST has again delivered a clear advantage to customers targeting opportunities for multi-service platforms offering advanced features,” said Philippe Lambinet, Executive VP and General Manager of the Home Entertainment and Displays Group, STMicroelectronics. “The STi7141, in itself an industry first thanks to high-end capabilities, unprecedented integration and compliance with current and forthcoming standards, has been central to achieving this important goal.”

The STi7141 supports the latest HD broadcast standards including MPEG4/H.264/VC1 decoding. The DOCSIS/EuroDOCSIS 2.0 cable modem enables always-on Internet connection and supports IP-based interactive TV and Internet telephone services. The STi7141 is also ready for DOCSIS 3.0 channel bonding, which will allow broadband download speeds up to 120Mbit/s. Support for HDMI, USB, eSATA and Ethernet interconnects is also built in.

The STB reference design, with supporting sample software, is available directly from STMicroelectronics to customers with an NDA. The STi7141 is in full production, in a 35 x 35mm PBGA package, with pricing available on application.