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MIPS, Sigma Design, bring full HD to Android

Posted: 02 Sep 2009     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:full HD  Android  HD video 

MIPS Technologies Inc. and Sigma Designs Inc. are bringing a full HD experience to the Android platform. They have already demonstrated an Android-based system that displays 1,080p video on a full HD flat screen display.

This HD video demonstration is a major milestone towards the creation of a reference platform for an Android-based STB—a goal that Sigma and MIPS have been jointly working towards with other members of the STB working group of the Open Embedded Software Foundation (OESF). The goal of the OESF consortium is to drive Android into new CE segments beyond the mobile handset, where Android is already finding success.

"After showing a Blu-ray reference design for Android in June, we are pleased to now show full HD video on a MIPS-based platform from Sigma—a platform that was selected as an official Android reference port for the OESF STB working group," said Ken Lowe, VP of strategic marketing, Sigma Designs. "Support for Android is a priority on Sigma's roadmap as we enable our customers to quickly, easily and cost-effectively bring exciting new functionality to their next-generation of connected devices including DTVs, STBs and Blu-ray players."

"We are excited to join with Sigma to announce this latest Android on MIPS milestone and another industry-first," said Art Swift, VP of marketing at MIPS. "Since we announced public availability of the Android on MIPS source code earlier this month, over 600 people have registered to access the code, and we actually had to add server and network capacity in order to meet demand! Together with our ecosystem partners, silicon partners and early access customers, we are making incredible progress in driving Android into devices beyond the mobile handset."

To enable Android to run on an HD screen rather than the small screen of a mobile handset, Sigma and MIPS undertook enhancements to Android libraries and the MIPS architecture. Sigma extended libraries within Android to support hardware graphics acceleration and hardware decoding to take advantage of their SoC capabilities for HD. MIPS is also making performance optimisations specifically for the MIPS32 architecture. This optimised code will be available in the future as part of the publicly-available Android on MIPS code.

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