STMicroelectronics outlines product portfolio for US cable

Friday, January 3rd, 2014
STMicroelectronics logo

STMicroelectronics Technologies and Complete US-Cable Portfolio Enable the Digital Multimedia Home

  • Complete offering spans from network access to video processing and in-home connectivity

GENEVA — STMicroelectronics (NYSE: STM), a global semiconductor leader serving customers across the spectrum of electronics applications, announces today the industry’s most complete hardware and software platform for the digital multimedia home. The complete product offering includes all the ingredients required for the US cable market from high-speed broadband access to Ultra HD multi-screen video processing and seamless home connectivity over wired and wireless networks.

“To meet the high-bandwidth demands of US consumers, Cable operators have introduced high-speed networks capable of delivering high-end interactive content to displays from TVs to smartphones and tablets,” said Gian Luca Bertino, Executive Vice President and General Manager, Digital Convergence Group, STMicroelectronics. “To ensure that this content is properly processed, managed and distributed, home-gateway and client-box SoCs must integrate a wide range of wired and wireless interfaces, low-power modes, and premium content protection. ST’s broad, market-unique offering for the digital multimedia home puts all the pieces into place to enable operators to deliver the best user experience and most advanced services at optimized cost.”

ST’s DOCSIS® 3.0-certified(1) cable-modem chips (the STiD12 product family, codenamed ‘Alicante’) provide fast network connectivity for multimedia home entertainment and interactive broadband services. The extremely high data rates up to 800Mbit/s enable set-top boxes and home gateways to deliver video and Internet data services over a single network and support simultaneous use of multiple connected devices. The DOCSIS 3.0 chips and associated software stack facilitate access to on-demand and streaming content and support the next-generation Internet Protocol (IPv6) that enables more devices to be connected to the Internet.

ST’s latest multimedia application-processor System-on-Chips (the STiH3 client-box and STiH4 server-box product families, codenamed ‘Cannes’ and ‘Monaco’, respectively) support decode and display resolution up to the leading-edge Ultra HD (2160p) and the next-generation H.265 / HEVC(2) video compression. This combination sets to extend the viewing experience for end users with more realistic and in-the-action immersion.

The STiH3 and STiH4 architecture is based on the high-performance Dual ARM® Cortex™ CPU and provides native support for the RDK(3) software adopted by major US cable operators. It also supports other 3rd party software used in the US Cable market such as the PowerUp HTML5 Platform with the PowerUp DVB stack(4) from Zodiac Interactive.

The ST platform enables whole-home distribution of high-definition video and content over wired and wireless networks at Gbit/s speeds. Supporting MoCA(5)2 specification, ST chips (STiC2BB/STiC2PA) combine super-fast error-less data transmission over the existing coaxial cabling with low-power modes of sleep and standby on a home-multimedia network. ST’s set-top box platform supports the latest WiFi standard (802.11ac) enabling swift and reliable wireless streaming of bandwidth-intensive video content, including Over-the-Top, Pay TV (up to Ultra HD resolution) and gaming, to multiple clients throughout the home, all at the same time and over the same frequency spectrum.

More than 50 million set-top boxes and about 17 million DOCSIS 3.0-enabled CPE (Customer Premises Equipment) units are forecast to be shipped annually in North America alone in the next couple of years(6).

1. Certified by CableLabs, a consortium of cable experts and industry operators.
2. High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC) doubles the data compression ratio used with the previous H.264/MPEG-4 AVC standard at the same level of video quality.
3. The Reference Design Kit (RDK) is a pre-integrated software bundle developed and licensed to create a common framework for powering IP or hybrid set-top boxes (STBs) and gateway devices for CE manufacturers, SoC vendors, and other software developers, system integrators and TV service providers. The RDK was developed to accelerate the deployment of next-generation video services and prevent software fragmentation by providing speed-to-market, collaboration and standardization. Supported by more than 100 licensees, RDK Management, LLC was formed as a joint venture between Comcast Cable and Time Warner Cable to administer the RDK.
4. The PowerUp HTML5 Platform and DVB stack is a modular solution set based on an open industry standard that provides a common foundation for legacy and next-generation managed and un-managed devices for both QAM and IP service delivery.
5. Multimedia over Coax Alliance.
6. Sources: IHS Market Reports, ST internal estimates.