World's highest performance set-top box SoC supports high-end Android-based IPTV

April 22, 2013 // By Paul Buckley
STMicroelectronics says that the company’s Orly system-on-chip (SoC) is now powering a new generation of advanced set-top boxes introduced by NTT Plala Inc., a leading Internet / IPTV service provider in Japan.

The STB has been developed by Sumitomo Electric Networks, Inc., a major Japanese equipment producer for home entertainment and broadband service providers, with operations around the world.

ST’s Orly was selected as the high-end SoC best fit for Sumitomo’s global set-top box middleware platform based on Linux, Android Ice Cream Sandwich and HTML5. In particular, the Orly’s dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 MPCore processor allows the set-top boxes to run the Android operating system and so connect easily to new marketplaces including mobile ecosystems.  The integrated ARM Mali 3D graphics processor has allowed Sumitomo to create a rich user interface for Android-based services.

By integrating a dedicated real-time multimedia processor, multi-standard video decoding engines, and high-performance video encoding with support for HD and 3DTV standards, ST’s Orly provides the ideal platform enabling operators to deliver high-quality, innovative broadcast and Internet-based services. Its high processing capabilities enable fast transcoding for true multi-screen experiences on PCs, televisions, tablets and mobile devices throughout the home. Other important features include a high-performance security engine supporting the latest conditional access specifications and Digital Rights Management (DRM) for IPTV, OTT (Over-The-Top) and multi-screen, multi-room services with DLNA (Digital Living Network Alliance), ST’s proven Faroudja video-enhancement technology, media and data-driven applications, and support for Internet video standards.

ST’s Software Development Kit (SDK), created specifically for the SoC, supported Sumitomo’s efforts to simplify and accelerate the development of smart IPTV set-top boxes. The SDK provides components and tools needed to run Android on the set-top box and integrate proprietary IPTV middleware, while also supporting rich user-interface development leveraging native Android tools.

“By offering new smart IPTV STBs, we enhance user interface operability and deliver triple-tuner functionality,” said Katsumi Nagata, Board Director, Executive Director, Technology and Engineering Division, NTT Plala Inc. “By supporting Japan’s first cloud game called ‘Hikari TV Game’ and various applications called ‘Hikari TV Apps’, we are offering more convenient smart TV services that perfectly fit the lifestyle