Sigma Designs and Microsoft Collaborate on Advanced IPTV System-on-a-Chip for Microsoft Mediaroom

Powerful Sigma Designs SMP8654 Media Processor improves
cost/performance range for Microsoft Mediaroom deployments.

LAS VEGAS — April 14, 2008 — Sigma Designs (Nasdaq
“SIGM”), a leader in digital media processing system-on-a-chips (SoCs) for
consumer electronics, and Microsoft Corp. today announced a collaboration to
enable the Microsoft Mediaroom Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) and
multimedia platform to operate on next-generation set-top boxes using the new
Sigma SMP8654 SoC. The solution will provide a high-performance, cost-effective
design that will give service providers the ability to offer innovative
connected TV services, such as PC-to-TV photo and music sharing and also DVR
Anywhere, which gives consumers the flexibility to watch their recorded
programs on any TV in their home.

As a second-generation SoC platform for Microsoft Mediaroom,
Sigma’s SMP8654 builds on the successful legacy of its predecessor, the
SMP8634, while improving overall performance by approximately 50 percent. The
new collaboration reflects the strength of Microsoft and Sigma’s continuing
technology partnership and expands the range of partner solutions available within
the Microsoft Mediaroom ecosystem.

“Sigma’s new system-on-a-chip technology gives our customers
new ways to reduce costs and improve the performance of their IPTV service
deployments,” said Christine Heckart, general manager of marketing for
Microsoft TV. “Sigma has been a key partner in the Microsoft Mediaroom
ecosystem for more than two years. Our latest SoC collaboration with Sigma will
give our customers the ability to offer their subscribers new ways to get the
best in TV plus all their media, such as photos, music and favorite shows, in
one place.”

The SMP8654 includes a 500 Mhz Mips 24k main CPU, which
enables crisp user interaction and a wider range of application-based features
that enhance the “future-proofing” of this platform. A second Mips processor
called the IPU manages interrupt operations and offloads system tasks, such as
portions of the network stack, to further optimize main CPU utilization. In
addition, the SoC also maintains software compatibility with the Sigma
Multimedia Library to uniquely build on the proven performance and reliability
of Microsoft Mediaroom.

“We are very pleased with the success we’ve experienced as a
key technology partner within the Microsoft Mediaroom ecosystem,” said Ken
Lowe, vice president of strategic marketing for Sigma Designs. “Microsoft is a
key driving force in the development of the IPTV industry, and we are energized
to be moving into our second-generation platform together.”

About Sigma’s SMP8654 System-on-a-Chip Solution

Sigma’s SMP8654 media processor integrates a complete
complement of next-generation capabilities for a single-chip system-on-chip
(SOC) solution with a multi-core architecture, powerful multimedia processing,
robust content security system, and a full complement of peripherals. The
SMP8654 features a powerful 500-Mhz Mips host CPU, a second processor called
the IPU for offloading burdensome real-time tasks, and a third processor
dedicated to managing security functions. Its advanced decoder engines support
high-definition video decoding of H.264 (MPEG-4 part 10), Windows Media Video
9, VC-1, MPEG-2 and MPEG-4 (part 2), the new AVS standard, and can support up
to 16 independent streams on screen in different formats. High-performance
graphics acceleration, multi-standard audio decoding, advanced display
processing capabilities, and HDMI 1.3 output round out its multimedia core.
Powerful content security is ensured through a dedicated secure processor,
on-chip flash memory, and a range of digital rights management (DRM) engines
for high-speed payload decryption. Additional functions including dual 32-bit
DDR-2 memory controllers, dual Gigabit Ethernet controller, dual USB 2.0
controller, NAND flash controller, and SATA controller provide for a
single-chip solution for most set-top boxes and consumer players.

One thought on “Sigma Designs and Microsoft Collaborate on Advanced IPTV System-on-a-Chip for Microsoft Mediaroom

  1. This is actually a really good article. Unfortunatly the only provider scheduled to use Media Room is ATT. It is not currently part of the UVerse system (although it is in some of the adds) and current thought is that they will not add it to UVerse for at least another year. And of course the first supply of boxes that support this will go to bigger areas.

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