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April 26, 2010
CEDIA and HDMI, LLC Leadership Explore Joint Opportunities and Collaborate on Viable Solutions for CEDIA Members

Coverage of the Tokyo Seminar
HDMI 1.4aで追加された3Dフォーマット(ITmedia +D LifeStyle 4月22日 19時46分) >
2010年04月22日 19時46分 更新 >
2010年04月24日10時10分 / 提供:+D LifeStyle >
HDMI 1.4aの説明会が開催。放送用3Dや車載規格など(AV Watch - ‎2010年4月22日‎) >
2012年からHDMIのバージョン表記禁止!? (ASCII.jp - ‎2010年4月22日‎) >
HDMIライセンシング、HDMIの最新規格開発状況と仕様表記ガイドラインの説明会を実施 (Phile-web - ‎2010年4月22日‎) >
Dempa Shimbun newspaper on Friday, April 23 >

April 19, 2010
HDMI Licensing Announces Series of Worldwide Technology Seminars on New Features and Applications for HDMI 1.4 >

March 4, 2010
HDMI Licensing, LLC Releases HDMI Specification Version 1.4a

February 23, 2010
For concerns and questions about products recently appearing at HDFury.com, please contact HDCP. HDCP is owned and managed by Digital-CP LLC (owned by Intel Corporation). Digital-CP LLC is aware of the existence of this product and has informed HDMI Licensing, LLC that they are taking appropriate action. Please go to http://www.digital-cp.com/ for more information.

July 30, 2009
Solving HDMI Compliance and Interoperability Issues During Product Development

May 2009
Explaining HDMI while Solving the Cause of Blue-Screen Nightmares
SoundStage! Xperience

February 3, 2009
Adopter Alert—Updated CEC Implementation Guidelines Available

April 14, 2009
Latching Connectors Help HDMI Connections Stay Seated >

April 14, 2009
HDMI Standard Recognized by the Film and Television Producers of India

April 14, 2009
Closed Captioning (CC) and HDMI

Adopter Alert—False ATC Certificates >

Trademark and Logo Guidelines In Effect 10/17/2008 >


HDMI Licensing, LLC Releases HDMI Specification Version 1.4a

Latest Version Specifies Mandatory 3D Formats For Broadcast Content

On March 4, 2010, HDMI Licensing, LLC, released the HDMI Specification Version 1.4a, which features key enhancements for 3D applications including the addition of mandatory 3D formats for broadcast content as well as the addition of the 3D format referred to as Top-and-Bottom.

The complete HDMI Specification Version 1.4a, along with the 1.4a version of the Compliance Test Specification (CTS), is available to Adopters on the HDMI Adopter Extranet.

An extraction of the 3D portion of Specification Version 1.4a is available for public download on the HDMI Web site at http://www.hdmi.org/manufacturer/specification.aspx.


Solving HDMI Compliance and Interoperability Issues During Product Development

QuantumData Logo

Article written and prepared by Quantum Data.

July 30, 2009

The HDMI standard has been tremendously successful. In 5 years HDMI has become the worldwide/global standard for digital connectivity in the home theatre. By 2010 there will be an estimated 1 billion HDMI-enabled consumer electronics and PC products deployed in the market (Source:12/2008, In-Stat). As one of the leading test equipment vendors, Quantum Data has been asked to provide test solutions for HDMI compliance and interoperability problems encountered during product development in R&D labs.

HDMI Port Usage

Despite the clear benefits of HDMI connectivity and its impressive penetration into both consumer electronics and PC market segments, many HDMI ports remain unconnected. Multiple Service Operators (MSOs) do not routinely connect their digital set-top boxes using the HDMI port during installation. And home theatre installers may use the analog component connection where comparable video resolutions are available. Why? Primarily because there is a perception that connecting the HDMI ports may be prone to interoperability problems.

HDCP Interoperability

Many potential interoperability issues are related to content protection. The HDMI Standard, like many digital interface standards, has a companion high-definition content protection system. HDMI uses the HDCP specification licensed by Digital Content Protection, LLC. There are many details about HDCP authentication, hot plug and EDID that developers have to get right to ensure interoperability, especially when repeater devices are involved. When authentication fails, consumers may be left in mute, watching a blank screen, blinking video, or snow. Historically, most HDCP handshake problems can be traced back to missing infrastructure. Test equipment and certification procedures are critical to any new technology.

A New Ecosystem Based on HDMI Connectivity

The advent of a new A/V interface standard such as the HDMI Standard has been likened to an ecosystem. All the various inter-related pieces—interface specifications, compliance test specification, authorized testing facilities, test equipment—for all functions—have to come together to achieve interoperability. For product development and interoperability testing, a variety of test equipment is needed. For the most part these test instruments exist for the HDMI technology; but not all. There have been no commercially available test instruments—until now—that provide complete visibility into, and analysis of, the encrypted HDMI protocol transactions including all infoframes, audio packet headers, etc. Without visibility into the HDMI protocol, developers are blind to the root cause of interoperability problems and as a result have a more difficult time resolving them during product development.

An HDMI "Protocol Scope"

The ideal solution to eliminate most if not all potential HDMI interoperability issues is an HDMI "protocol scope" that would enable developers in R&D to see all the transactions across the DDC and all data within the encrypted TMDS stream, as well as the timing relationship between DDC transactions, data island packets, video data, and mode changes.

One of the challenges in creating a test instrument such as an HDMI protocol scope is ensuring that a user can capture the particular frames of data within which a specific event occurs. Pre-capture filtering along with user defined triggering on multiple values and changes in value(s) of any HDMI metadata, is critically important to ensure that the required data is captured.

Once the capture and trigger criteria are met, the instrument should log and display all data types including DDC transactions and video and audio metadata. Search and navigation mechanisms to locate specific events, in the vast collection of captured HDMI frames, are necessary to facilitate rapid location of data inconsistencies.

A protocol scope should depict the relative positioning of the video, audio and control data through an intuitive time-based interface. For example, showing encryption controls in relation to the HDCP transactions, data islands and sync controls is very useful for solving certain potential HDMI interoperability issues.

In addition to providing basic visibility and techniques for examining the data, an HDMI protocol scope should provide a set of useful analysis tools that address common problem types. Analysis tools that provide basic timing information and detect timing instabilities are essential. But much more is required. For example, analyzing audio data and comparing the sampling rate derived from multiple sources, is important to ensure consistency in the data.

An HDMI protocol scope test instrument is a key element of the HDMI ecosystem. By providing visibility into the HDMI data this type of instrument can greatly reduce potential interoperability problems and thereby ensure that HDMI interfaces are fully utilized in both Consumer Electronics equipment and PC applications.


Adopter Alert—Updated CEC Implementation Guidelines Available

With Consumer Electronics Control (CEC) already a 2008 winner of the PC Magazine Technical Excellence Award in the Home Theater category PC Magazine Technical Excellence Award, HDMI Licensing, LLC is finalizing guidelines to help manufacturers implement CEC. Version 0.9 (pre-final) of the CEC Implementation Guidelines (Ver. 0.9, January, 2009) is now available to HDMI Adopters for review and comment. The final version of the CEC Guidelines will provide a minimum set of recommended commands useful to consumers as well as guidelines for multi-vendor interoperability.

"CEC functionality delivers much needed system simplicity for consumers who face the increasingly daunting task of organizing and operating a complex set of products from a variety of vendors," said Steve Venuti, President of HDMI Licensing, LLC. "Updating CEC provides a foundation for products to work together in the most common use cases and should build consumer demand. This will enable our Adopters to develop additional features and functionalities into their next products."

To receive a copy, Adopters need to simply fill out the online request form. Upon confirmation of a company's status as an HDMI Adopter, HDMI Licensing will send a copy of the CEC Implementation Guidelines within two business days.


Latching Connectors Help HDMI Connections Stay Seated

Let’s face it: cables sometimes come unplugged. Kids, dogs, vacuum cleaners, and the law of gravity all conspire occasionally to unseat the HDMI connector. The resulting signal loss can be anything from a minor nuisance to a business issue, depending on the application and the timing. But now, a few innovative HDMI Adopters are offering to solve the problem with connectors that latch or lock in place, mitigating the risk of an accidental disconnect.

While the HDMI standard does not specify any type of latching connector, this is a great example of Adopters identifying a need and coming up with solutions, working within the framework of the standard while adding new capabilities. The technical approaches may vary, but they’re all addressing the same objective: helping connectors stay seated in real-world applications.

One of the more interesting solutions, and the first to pass ATC compliance testing, is from Torrent, Inc. (www.torrent-inc.com). Instead of a mechanical latching mechanism, Torrent’s patent-pending MagLoc™ technology uses a small magnet in the connector to keep it firmly seated in the port, along with an auto-adjusting sleeve to secure the fit. This sliding mechanism allows the connector to adapt itself to HDMI ports of various depths across a broad range of devices. These cables also feature an integrated diagnostic function called VeriFYI™, which checks for proper signal transmission and confirms the link visually with a built-in LED indicator light.

Mechanical latching mechanisms are also under development by several other HDMI Adopters, and we expect to see some of these solutions pass compliance testing in the near future. Broadly speaking, these connectors are designed to use the existing leaf springs inside an HDMI port, but rather than relying on a conventional friction-hold for retention, deploy a set of mechanical prongs that latch into the springs for positive contact.

In one implementation, the latching prongs are depressed by pushing a small button built into the connector overmolding when inserting or removing the cable, and then snap into place when the button is released. In another approach, the connector is inserted normally for a friction fit, after which the latching prongs can be activated by a small swivel switch.

All of the solutions we’ve seen, magnetic and mechanical, are designed to be backward-compatible with existing HDMI equipment, with a regulation-size connector and no modification required on the port.

While it’s too early to say how big the market opportunity may be for latching connectors, a number of factors point to a healthy and growing demand. The HDMI interface was originally designed for a thinner, relatively lightweight cable, whereas today’s high-performance cables can be considerably heavier. Since HDMI cables cannot be self-terminated, many users end up with connections that are a bit longer than they need, adding still more cable weight. And with many flat-panel displays, the HDMI ports are located on the bottom of the unit, facing down, further enhancing the role of gravity. To the cable or satellite service operator, an accidental disconnect can be an expensive mishap, resulting in a service call – which explains why a number of providers are interested in either installing or recommending HDMI cables with latching connectors for their customers.

Of course in the PC world, latching connectors are the norm. Cables going into the back of a desktop PC are often arched back on themselves or even bent double, putting a lot of stress on the connection. As HDMI gains ground in PC applications, it’s reasonable to suppose that latching connectors will find a ready market there. And in industrial applications such as trade show displays, kiosks, and presentation equipment, latching connectors are bound to be attractive, as they can reduce the risk of downtime in critical business settings.


HDMI Standard Recognized by the Film and Television Producers of India

The Film and Television Producers of India have recognized the HDMI standard as the de-facto worldwide standard digital interface for HDTVs and high-definition digital consumer electronics products. In addition to offering the highest quality, single-cable solution for consumers, the HDMI standard ensures secure content protection of filmmakers, broadcasters and other content creators.

Steve Venuti, President of HDMI Licensing, LLC states, "We are honored that the HDMI standard has been recognized by the Film and Television Producers of India. The Indian film industry is one of the most prolific and influential in the world, producing more than 800 films yearly with an estimated global audience of 3.5 billion by 2010. As the single-cable, global connectivity standard for consumer electronics and PC products, the HDMI standard is well positioned to support India’s transition to digital media."

India is quickly migrating to the digital age. By 2012, India is set to become the second-largest digital cable TV home market in Asia-Pacific. There are expected to be over 12 million digital cable subscribers by 2012 and 32 million by 2017.


Closed Captioning (CC) and HDMI

Closed Captioning

Closed captioning logo

The evolution from analog to digital TV has added some complexity to Closed Captioning (CC). With one standard way of broadcasting/transmitting, decoding and displaying content NTSC or PAL, depending on region, analog TV made enabling CC fairly easy across CE devices since the TV was able to do all the CC decoding.

With the advent of digital TV and the introduction of digital HDTV services (cable, satellite, etc.) the responsibility of decoding CC has been taken away from the TVs and put into the various Set Top Boxes (STB) that are required for the majority of the digital HDTV services. Additionally, these STBs now have different ways of enabling CC making it complicated and creating confusion for consumers. All set-top boxes are required to support CC, however the implementation of CC can vary from one product to another. Enabling CC on a specific set-top box can be simple, or more difficult, depending on the implementation.

HDMI, LLC recommends contacting your TV service provider (cable, satellite, etc.) for the correct way to switch on its CC feature as a first step to resolve this issue. The second step is to contact the manufacturers directly for the correct way to enable the CC feature within your product.

HDMI and Closed Captioning

All HDMI specifications support Closed Captioning (CC) and enable the rendering of CC signals between CE devices. HDMI carries and delivers all the rendered data, in its entirety (including CC) , produced from the source device to the display device.

HDMI, LLC is working with all CE vendors and service providers (cable, satellite, etc.) to make them aware of this issue. In addition, we are also encouraging these vendors and service providers to take steps that will address this CC problem which will deliver a more user friendly way for consumers to activate the CC feature.


Adopter Alert—False ATC Certificates

HDMI Licensing, LLC has recently found a falsified ATC certificate that a manufacturer of HDMI products used to represent their products as having passed compliance. This manufacturer was also misrepresenting itself as an HDMI Adopter. The company that was on the certificate was not and has never been an HDMI Adopter. HDMI Licensing, LLC is taking action to ensure that incident is investigated thoroughly.

HDMI Licensing, LLC requests that you carefully research any manufacturers that your company does business with to ensure that they are fully compliant with HDMI Licensing's policies. In addition, HDMI Licensing, LLC requests that you make sure any company that you do business with is listed as an HDMI Adopter on the HDMI website. If your company finds any misrepresentation on compliance in the marketplace, please notify HDMI Licensing by emailing admin@hdmi.org.

HDMI Licensing believes this to be an isolated incident based in China, but will continue our ongoing efforts to eliminate any and all misrepresentation.


Trademark and Logo Guidelines In Effect 10/17/2008

Logos

Designed to clarify consumer expectations and to help manufacturers more effectively market their HDMI-enabled products, these updated guidelines apply to all products shipped on or after October 17th. Highlights include:

HDMI version numbers, i.e. "HDMI 1.3" can no longer be referenced in marketing materials unless the manufacturer also lists the specific HDMI features that are supported.

HDMI-related features must be referenced using consistent naming conventions, e.g., DeepColor or x.v.Color, rather than by the use of manufacturer-specific brand names. In order to claim the feature, the manufacturer must demonstrate a minimum level of functionality.

HDMI cables that have been tested to a higher performance standard (defined as "Category 2" in the HDMI standard) are to be labeled "High-Speed HDMI" cables. A High-Speed HDMI cable has been tested to reliably send a 1080p signal for 7.5 meters or more.

The new trademark and logo guidelines can be viewed in their entirety at: http://www.hdmi.org/manufacturer/trademark_logo_pub.aspx