STMicroelectronics introduces UltraHD and HEVC set-top box chips

Thursday, September 12th, 2013
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UltraHD and HEVC Video Decoding Set-Top Box Chips from STMicroelectronics Immerse Viewers in the Action

  • ST’s new System-on-Chip families target client-box applications including IP set-top boxes, servers and gateways

GENEVA — STMicroelectronics (NYSE:STM), a global semiconductor leader serving customers across the spectrum of electronics applications, has introduced two set-top box System-on-Chip (SoC) families, codenamed ‘Cannes’ and ‘Monaco’, that include devices with UltraHD resolution (2160p) and HEVC (High Efficiency Video Coding) video-decoding support. The new product families improve the viewing experience while enriching ST’s digital consumer portfolio with a wide range of compatible chips for server, gateway and client-box applications.

The ‘Cannes’ client-box SoC family (STiH312, STiH310, STiH305) addresses a wide range of needs from extensive support of high-definition premium content to all-integrated, cost-optimized solutions. It delivers high computing capabilities based on ARM multi-core processors, superior 2D/3D graphics performance, integrated hardware video encoders with pre-processing, and Faroudja®-enhanced video processing. The devices also feature PCIe™ supporting Wi-Fi connectivity, smart-card interfaces, two 6Gbit/s Gen 3 eSATA interfaces, as well as USB2/3, low-power modes, and comprehensive security toolbox for premium content delivery.

The STiH312 device will allow next-generation set-top boxes to stream HEVC high-definition content over lower-speed broadband connections, including content with 2160p resolution (known as UltraHD, or UHD), that significantly augments the viewing experience for end users with more realistic and in-the-action immersion. Moreover, combined with the HEVC standard, UHD increases the number of households accessing very high-quality content while reducing delivery costs for service providers.

The STiH305 and STiH310 support a wide range of video standards (including H.264 and/or HEVC) and enable a new generation of cost-optimized set-top boxes that allow operators to deliver services with reduced bandwidth utilization, including best-in-class solution for HEVC HD content.

The ‘Monaco’ family provides an economical yet full-featured solution for server-type applications such as home gateways. ST Faroudja® Transcode Engine provides best-in-class transcoding capabilities for multi-screen experiences across consumer and handheld devices. This allows operators to reduce their network bandwidth while offering an excellent quality of service throughout the home. The ‘Monaco’ family includes the ‘UltraHD’ STiH412 and cost-optimized derivatives (STiH407 and STiH410) for HD markets.

Both families offer advantages for set-top box producers by presenting a complete range of devices from cost-optimized chips to full-featured devices supporting HD or UltraHD that build on the foundation of the popular STiH315 and STiH416 (‘Orly’) SoCs. The new devices combine wide market coverage with a single industry-proven Software Development Kit (SDK2), and support for stacks such as RDK (Reference Design Kit), Google TV, HTML 5 and established middleware.

“Our new set-top box SoC families aim to accelerate the mass deployment of UltraHD and HEVC technologies that represent a major change in viewing experience and network performance,” said Gian Luca Bertino, Executive Vice President and General Manager, Digital Convergence Group, STMicroelectronics. “ST is well positioned to satisfy the surge in demand expected to coincide with major international sporting events, including the 2014 soccer World Cup.”

The STiH312, STiH310, STiH305, STiH412, STiH410 and STiH407 devices share a single ball-out to facilitate the board design for multiple markets. All devices will be sampling to lead customers in Q4 2013.