Mobile Devices Wired for Sound and Video with MHL

Apple users have enjoyed streaming of audio and video to big screen TV's for quite some time. Miracast holds some promise for non-Apple users, but sometimes a wired connection is just better.

Flat Panel Display Price Erosion and Performance Improvements Drive Increased Demand

After struggling in 2011 with a challenging market environment due to sliding demand and price erosion, 2012 marks a year of recovery for the flat panel display (FPD) industry. According to the latest NPD DisplaySearch Quarterly Worldwide FPD Shipment and Forecast Report, worldwide FPD revenues will reach $120 billion in 2012, up 8% from $111 billion in 2011, and exceeding 2010 revenues. Among the various FPD technologies, TFT LCD accounts for the majority of revenues at $107.7 billion in 2012, up from $99.4 billion in 2011. However, AMOLED displays once again showed the strongest Y/Y growth, as manufacturing capacity and market players continue to expand. However, with the exception of LCOS (liquid crystal on silicon, a form of microdisplay) all other display technologies, including plasma and passive matrix forms of LCD and OLED, are declining in 2012. In a sharp reversal, AMEPD (active matrix electrophoretic display), which is used in monochrome e-readers, swung from strong growth in 2011 to even stronger decline in 2012, due to competition from TFT LCD-based tablet PCs.

Infocomm 2012 Special News Report

News Releases from the show.

Google Play Music and Movies purchasing reaches Google TV.

It's been one of the more conspicuous omissions in the media hub space: despite Google Play being the cornerstone of Google's content strategy, you couldn't truly use the company's music or movie services through Google TV without depending on content you'd already paid for elsewhere. As of a new upgrade, the ecosystem has come full circle. Viewers with Google TV boxes can at last buy or rent directly from Google Play Movies and Google Play Music, and the content will be indexed in the TV & Movies section alongside third-party video services and traditional TV. The upgrade also helps Google's TV front end play catch-up with its mobile counterpart by adding automatic app updates and subscriptions. While device owners may have to wait a few weeks as the upgrade rolls out, the addition signals a big step forward for a platform that has normally leaned heavily on others for help.

Understanding the Technical Specifications of Outdoor Digital Displays for QSR

Outdoor signage for QSR needs to meet government approval and stand up to the rigors of the environment. In this article, Delphi Display Systems' Director of Product management, Mark DiCamillo explains what's required

Are retail digital signage systems watching you?

For better or worse, retailers risk falling into the "uncanny valley" by knowing too much about every shopper's habits and buying preferences, which has led to the slow and uncertain adoption of video-based retail shopper identification and marketing systems.

Why Microsoft and Apple Should Combine Hobby Products?

Microsoft confuses me. They have one the best DVR’s on the market with Windows Media Center (WMC), yet they seem disinterested in adding features and are continually sending out signals that its life is almost over.  Apple has pretty much treated the AppleTV as a hobby from day one and according to Tim Cook it’s still a wait and see product. Maybe Apple and Microsoft should get serious, combine their two hobbies (or red-headed step children) and make the best set-top box/DVR on the market. Many were left wondering about the future of WMC when Microsoft announced that Media Center would not be an integral part of Windows 8. Now, according to Ceton , “it is still unclear whether Media Center will be offered in the next version of Windows Embedded”. (Windows embedded is an OEM version of Windows used to develop customized systems/products such as SlingCatcher, Ford SYNC, etc.) Consequently, Ceton has announced that “it’s possible the Q will launch in 2013, either as initially envisioned or perhaps re-envisioned, but we can’t guarantee that at this point.  We know there is a ton of interest in the Q and that this news will be disappointing to a lot of you but we think it’s important to be upfront about where things stand.” Top marks to Ceton for being up-front with their customers and prospective customers; failing grade for Microsoft for muddying the waters further.

Build a foolproof home-media network-without any wires

Until recently, nothing short of ethernet wires had the bandwidth necessary to pipe media from one room to another. And unless you were a networking geek, you’d have had to spend thousands of dollars getting a knowledgeable professional to punch holes in your walls to wire your house with ethernet jacks. That time has passed. Today's wireless networks can handle video, music, and lightning-fast Web surfing without breaking a sweat—and they require very little skill to set up. Want to battle it out in Halo 3 via the Xbox in your den, or to play a movie from the collection stored on your server in your basement? I’ll cover everything you need to know to "wire" your house without stringing new cable or busting your budget. Just one caveat before we go on. The speed of your Internet connection will have a significant impact on the quality of the real-time video you get from streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon Instant Video. If your genuine download speeds are below 6 mbps, you may be limited to streaming lower-resolution video from the Internet. Read Full Article

DSF Establishes New Standards for Educators

The Digital Signage Federation has established a set of new National Standards for Digital Signage Education to provide curriculum guidance for universities, colleges and specialty schools throughout North America, wherever areas of study touch on coursework related to the various facets of digital signage. By establishing National Standards for Digital Signage Education, the DSF aims to broaden the labor pool of qualified candidates for future employment in the digital signage industry. As the digital signage industry grows, it is imperative that employers have qualified entry-level choices of personnel to be able to grow their business affordably. Going forward, the DSF will be working to secure adoption of these Standards by colleges, universities and specialty schools, to provide the guidance necessary to frame their curricula to ensure that graduates have the prerequisites necessary to meet the industry’s hiring needs.  

Startup Ube Readies Free Android, iOS Home-Control Apps

Startup Ube Management, whose founders include former CEDIA CEO Utz Baldwin, plans November availability of free Android and iOS apps that deliver Wi-Fi and cellular control of more than 200 IP-based home electronics and home-control products. The compatible products range from smart TVs and set-top boxes to garage-door openers, thermostats, and planned Ube-brand lighting dimmers and smart power outlets. The lighting dimmers and smart outlets are due in March. The technology eliminates the need to install a central processing unit to control multiple home systems and eliminates expensive programming, which often involves the mixing and matching of different hardware and software standards, the company said. Ube’s system will therefore bring down the cost of home control to mass-market prices, the company continued. “By moving the intelligence into the device, where it belongs, these smart energy devices enable simple, intuitive smartphone control of home lighting and other appliances,” Ube said. The company is using seed money from founders and angel investors to launch the apps, and it plans to raise additional money to launch the Ube-branded hardware.

Taking the Guesswork out of HDMI switching with InstaPrevue

InstaPrevue technology provides the first-ever, live picture-in-picture preview of HDMI® and MHL inputs connected to an AVR or HDMI/MHL switch. Instead of having to remember, or guess, which device is connected to which input of a TV or AVR, a thumbnail of the content makes it easy to identify the source.

Mozaex Media Server Review

Mozaex offers a range of 3D-ready media servers and media players that can be used to distribute audio and video throughout the house. Priced at a fraction of the cost of Kaleidescape, the products do not breach any of the DVD Copy Control Association's (DVD CCA) contracts. We took a few of their products for a spin and were impressed.

Crestron's airConnect won't leave iOS users out in the cold

Creston's airConnect is a revolutionary location system that currently utilizes Near-Field Communication (NFC) and a user's NFC-equipped SmartPhone. The launch of the iPhone 5 without NFC looked (to many) like it would be a no-go ofr iOS users. Turns out the iPhone 5, and new iPods incorporate a key piece of technology and Crestron have had a contingency plan all along.

Two-Piece Projection Systems in Residential Environments

Projectors have long been beanished to the dedicated home theater, but with such rooms disappearing from floorplans more and more and improved technology, Screen Innovations makes a compelling case for replacing the TV with a two-piece projection system.

Automotive Ethernet Conformance and Interoperability Testing

Automotive Ethernet promises to both reduce the cable weight used in cars today and offer increase bandwidth compared with existing MOST-based designs. At the forefront of the interoperability testing is UNH's InterOperability Lab (IOL).

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Automation & Control - Featured Product

Light sockets; Not just for lights anymore

Light sockets; Not just for lights anymore

Smart Bulbs are out there and they can do far more then just provide light. Speakers, projectors, wi-fi extenders and more. The standard light socket that is wired up and ready to go in nearly every home in North America is now providing an easy and affordable option for home owners and renters alike to enter into the world of the "Smart Home". Here is a look at some of the Smart Bulbs and Smart Lighting options out there, and this list is just the beginning. In this ongoing article we hope to continue to add to and grow this list, so stay tuned!