NDS, the News Corporation company that provides software and security systems for television set-top boxes, has launched an integrated solution that allows access over a home network to audio and video material stored on personal computers.
XTend will be integrated into set-top boxes that are capable of network connectivity. The plug-and-play design will apparently enable the automatic detection of personal computers and network attached storage devices. It handles format conversions so that content can be seamlessly transferred and viewed through the set-top box.
“XTend is a natural extension to NDS’s offering to TV operators,” said Yossi Deutsch, vice president of product marketing at NDS. “It allows broadband media users to migrate their viewing from the PC over to the most intuitive and comfortable environment–the TV in the living room. At the same time, XTend increases consumer loyalty to the STB as the main consumption point for all digital media within the home network.”
NDS has also showed its vision of the future of television, with a demonstration of what it calls project Rothko. This concept interface was characterised by perspective images and transparency layers, based on anticipated developments in the power of video decoders.
High-definition displays not only offer the opportunity for richer graphics and improved text rendering, but the processing power required to manipulate their images may support more sophisticated user interfaces.
As a result, the next generation of set-top boxes may finally shed their association with limited colour palettes and clunky graphics, offering displays that are closer to those of personal computers.