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STMicroelectronics and HDIC joint venture releases flexible digital TV middleware

Posted: 04 Nov 2005     Print Version  Bookmark and Share


STMicroelectronics (ST) has announced that affiliate company Shanghai-BMC—a joint venture with HDIC, released its complete MBT middleware solution for TV set-top boxes (STBs) intended for the Chinese market and international operators.

STB middleware is an embedded software solution that enables operators to run the same applications on STBs from different manufacturers, regardless of the underlying hardware. The Media Beacon Tower (MBT) System Technology TV middleware has been developed over several years by HDIC and has been enhanced and brought to market by the S-BMC joint venture.

Compared to a competitive HTML-based solution, MBT provides TV operators with exceptional flexibility in enabling them to run multiple Java applications—with complex interactivity where required—and download new applications and new software versions using the Digital Storage Media Command and Control protocol. In addition its open interface with the device drivers simplifies the development of third party applications that add value to the package. The middleware supports multiple standards 'out of the box', against the single-standard browser solution.

The new STB solution is compliant with MPEG-2, DAVIC/DVB, DTVM and other standards. It supports Java applications under Java ME (Java 2 Platform, Micro Edition), the collection of Java APIs targeting embedded consumer products, and its layered architecture and modular design provide open and uniform interfaces with both the real time operating system and with the STB drivers, for true hardware independence.

"Digital broadcasting is really taking off in China, creating demand for new digital set top boxes and DTVs," said Bob Krysiak, Corporate Vice President and General Manager for the Greater China Region. He added that China is a key market and ST is committed to investing both time and significant resources with key partners to grow the Chinese market.

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