Wireless HDMI comes a step closer

Getting rid of those fat cables

The two companies are developing a reference design for in-room HDMI cable replacement applications as well as for whole-home full-HD video content sharing, using standards-based Wi-Fi networking technology.

The problem with distributing HDMI signals wirelessly is that the raw datarate of an HDMI signal pushes the capacity of standard WiFi links, creating problems with range. There are also interference and latency issues with high-bandwidth wireless links, which can undermine picture and sound quality as well as synchronisation between the two.

The joint reference design uses Cavium’s PureVu Video Processor and Celeno’s CL1300 HD-grade Wi-Fi tranceiver. The companies claim the design will deliver compressed 480P, 720P and 1080P HD video signals at 60 frames per second with sub-frame latency and perceptual lossless video quality.

Celeno's chip uses the 4x4 implicit beam-forming MIMO transmission technology available within the 802.11n specification to boost the range and robustness of the reference design’s signal.

Cavium's chip is a low latency H.264 codec, which is used to reduce the bitrate over the air.

Both companies argue that their use of standards in the reference design will help the uptake of any products based on it, as compared to the proprietary approaches that other companies are trying. They also expect it to be big business.

“With growing interest in networked CE devices and especially DVR sharing application, iSuppli expects to see wireless A/V streaming functionality adoption increase significantly over the next few years,” said Randy Lawson, senior analyst of display electronics for iSuppli. “Wi-Fi wireless technology enables video streaming over longer distances, and, since it is standards-based, allows for seamless interoperability between CE devices.”

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