The touchscreen smartphones with the works

News articles

Samsung unveils Bluetooth 3.0, 802.11n smartphone • Register Hardware

MWC: Samsung Rolls Out Wave Smartphone with Bada OS | eWeek.com

Samsung reveals first Android phone with DLP Pico projector | Android And Me blog

My comments about these phones

I had never thought that someone would come up with touchscreen smartphones that would beat the Apple iPhone hands down in many ways. What Samsung have done with the new Wave touchscreen smartphone and the Halo Android-based touchscreen projector smartphone that they launched at the Mobile World Congress in Spain has, in my opinion, achieved this goal.

One feature that I liked about the Wave and Halo phone were that they were the first few touchscreen smartphone devices to use the OLED technology for its display. This display, which I commented about in my review of my Nokia N85 smartphone, has a lot of advantages over the common LCD display used, such as high contrast and improved energy efficiency. I have often described these displays as being “vacuum-fluorescent displays for battery-operated devices” because they have the same high-contrast display as the vacuum-fluorescent displays found on most home-installed consumer-electronics devices, yet they don’t need as much power to operate as those displays.

Other things that I have liked about the Wave phone include the use of a Bluetooth stack that works to the current Bluetooth 3.0 standard which allows for high-speed data transfer when used in conjunction with the phone’s Wi-Fi transceiver. Speaking of that, the Wi-Fi transceiver is capable of working as a single-stream 802.11n unit which can allow higher throughput on 802.11n Wi-Fi networks. The Android-powered Halo has Bluetooth to 2.1, but has the 802.11n single-stream Wi-Fi.

As well as launching this smartphone at Mobile World Congress, Samsung had established an app-store and developer network so they can compete with Apple when it comes to applications that extend the phone’s function. They are also part of the Wholesale Applications Community which will improve the marketplace for smartphone applications.

Both phones use a micro-SD card slot for memory expansion or “cassette-style” operation when used as a media player. They use a USB connection and a 3.5mm headset jack which makes them compatible with most standards-based mobile phones and accessories. The Android-equipped Halo smartphone will, as far as I know, offer DLNA home media network integration of some sort.

From all that I have heard about these phones, Samsung, who are part of the “New Japan”, has “dipped their toes” in many smartphone platforms and has offered OLED touchscreen smartphones in two different platforms.

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AAPT setting the cat amongst the Australian ISP pigeons with a no-limit broadband plan

News articles

AAPT launches no limit broadband plan | The Australian

No cap on downloads as AAPT’s truly unlimited internet sets new standard

From the horse’s mouth

AAPT Plan Information Page – AAPT Entertainment Bundle with 24/7 Unlimited Broadband

AAPT Press Release

My comments on this scenario

Anyone who has used broadband Internet in Australia would be aware that all of the services have a usage limit and if you go past this limit, you would either have your Internet service throttled to a very low bandwidth rate or pay for the extra bandwidth used. Some service providers have modified these plans to allow for peak / off-peak limits with separate metering and a higher limit for off-peak hours. This idea is also being investigated in the US by cable companies, especially Comcast, as a way of shaping Internet traffic, mainly to keep IP-based independent video traffic off their networks.

Now AAPT have offered a $A99.95 residential broadband plan that is in the same vein as US or European Internet service plans i.e. it has no usage limits. This has now become an attempt to “one-up” everybody else in the Australian market. This firm had introduced plans with off-peak hours that were limit-free but this has become the most bold act that any major Australian ISP had offered.

This has happened even though Telstra and Optus had recently revised their plans to permit larger usage allowances due to the increased bandwidth available for international Internet traffic to Australia. Other issues that may have encouraged this include use of IP-based entertainment services like Internet radio and IPTV / video-on-demand; as well as the up-and-coming National Broadband Network.

It will be interesting to see what happens further with this deal – whether AAPT rolls it out on to other residential and/or small-business plans and whether other major-league ISPs will roll out “limit-free-all-day” plans and whether these will be offered across the board.

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Keeping sanity in your home network during periods of power unreliability

You may be in an area where the mains power cables are strung between poles and there are many trees alongside the cables, Similarly, your neighbourhood may use very old infrastructure for its mains power supply. As well, your electricity supply utility may be regularly engaging in “load-shedding” practices where it may reduce power to certain customers in order to avoid the need to generate extra power.

Sometimes, the premises that you are in may have very old electrical infrastructure that is undersized for modern needs and you may experience situations where the fuses blow too frequently. You may also have an appliance that is “on its last legs” so much so that it causes the fuses to blow or the circuit breaker or earth-leakage circuit breaker (safety switch) to trip when it is used.

In these situations, there is an increased likelihood of unreliable power and whenever the power comes back on, you may have problems getting your home network and Internet service up and running.

Equipment reset procedures

One task you may have to do every time the power comes back after a power cut or surge would be to reset the network-Internet “edge” equipment. If you have a modem integrated in to your router, like most ADSL setups, you may be able to get away with just powering down the router, waiting 10 seconds, then powering up the router.

On the other hand, if you have a cable modem, FTTH fibre-optic modem, DSL modem (including high-speed VDSL2 modems that are part of some next-generation broadband setups) or similar equipment connected to the broadband router via an Ethernet cable and powered by its own power supply, you may have to use a different procedure when resetting your network.

This is to avoid the common access-mismatch situation when you power both devices up at the same time. In this situation, the router attempts to gain network-availability information from the external modem while the external modem is trying to re-establish its link with the Internet service provider and it may not have that link established by the time the router needs it. This usually leads to the router using a “private network” or “Auto-IP” address as its broadband (WAN) address rather than the proper Internet service IP address.

You then reset your network using this procedure outlined below:

  1. Disconnect both the router and the external modem from the power
  2. Wait 10 seconds
  3. Connect the external modem to the power
  4. Wait for the external modem’s CABLE or other media-specific connection light to become stable
  5. Then wait for the “service” or “Internet” light to glow steady.
  6. Once that has happened, connect the router to the power
  7. Wait for the router’s “Internet”, “Broadband” or “WAN” light to become stable. You should then have a stable connection by then

Some installations such as certain FTTH installations may have a separate modem located outside the house and you may not be able to reset that unit. Here, you may just get away with just resetting your router by powering it down, waiting 10 seconds then powering it up again.

After this, you may have to restart or reset network-attached storage devices and other equipment in order to make sure they know where they are on the network and they make themselves known to the rest of the network. This also means that you may have to either reboot your computers that were on or force them to re-obtain their IP address from the broadband router.

Use of an uninterruptible power supply unit with your network equipment

It may be worth using an uninterruptible power supply with the network-Internet “edge” equipment to keep the equipment working properly in an environment known for an unstable power supply. You may get away with the lower-capacity UPS devices like the APC Back-UPS ES series if you intend to provide this kind of power to the network-Internet “edge” and, perhaps, a VoIP ATA or cordless phone base station. This would be an imperative where the household phone service is provided by a VoIP service like the many “n-boxes” (Livebox, Freebox, etc) in France, or the newly launched iiNet “Bob” base station in Australia.

It is also a good idea to connect a high-capacity UPS to your network-attached storage device if you run one on your network. This unit can make sure that the NAS unit is managed properly through the power outages to avoid data corruption and hard-disk damage. Here, you could perhaps use the same higher-capacity unit also to run the network-Internet “edge” equipment or run this equipment on a separate low-capacity UPS.

You may deploy a UPS for your computer, perhaps to provide a graceful shutdown when the power goes down. Here, you would still need the separate UPS for the network equipmentin order to avoid competition for the reserve power that may be needed for your computer or server to complete a proper shutdown if need be.

Conclusion

When you know how to properly manage your home network when the mains power becomes unstable, you will be able to assure long service life for your equipment and “keep your head on” when these times come around.

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Another threat to Apple being the king of “all things cool”

 Acer developing ‘ace in the hole’ ultrathin, putting MacBook Air on notice — Engadget

My comments on this topic

When Windows 7 was launched, I wrote an article on this blog about an intent by Windows-based PC manufacturers, especially laptop manufacturers to upstage the Apple Macintosh platform in the beauty, reliability and performance stakes. This was also ran in conjunction with HP launching their Envy laptop series which reminded me of the Apple Macbook Pro laptops. Later on, I had blogged about an ASUS laptop that would appeal to people who love the design masterpieces that are the Bang & Olufsen TVs and music systems.

In the earlier article, there had been some mention about Acer designing a multi-touch all-in-one PC. They had also come good on an ultra-thin Windows 7 laptop that is intended to upstage the Apple Macbook Air series of laptops. This Intel Core-powered unit will be designed with a thickness goal of 1.9cm (0.7 inches) and, of course, will be relatively light. Acer have an intention to release the machine sometime “this year” but I would place its availability sometime before the end of the next financial year.

This certainly shows that since Apple Snow Leopard and Microsoft Windows 7 were launched, the competition for computer hardware that pleases most everyday users has become more intense.

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Use of broadcast-network tuners to democratise pay-TV

 TiVo, Sony and others to FCC: ‘gateways’ should replace CableCARD — Engadget HD

My comments on this idea

The common situation with most TV households is that if they sign up to a pay-TV service like Foxtel (Australia), a local cable-TV franchise in the USA, DirecTV (USA) or Sky TV (UK), they can only watch TV through the set-top box provided by the service provider. The TV remote control ends up becoming redundant as they have to use the set-top box’s remote control for their TV viewing.

If they want to use a DVR i.e.. a “personal TV service”, they have to use the DVR option provided by the pay-TV provider rather than get a retail DVR solution like TiVo, a home-theatre PC such as Windows Media Center or one offered by a major consumer-electronics brand. In some situations like some cable-TV implementations in the US, you may be able to use a retail DVR solution along with a special “CableCARD” and, perhaps, a “tuning adaptor”. But this doesn’t provide the full service that the customer has put money up for, such as interactive TV or access to “pay-per-view” or “on-demand” content.

As well, a lot of these providers often charge an extra fee if the user wants to deploy a set-top box in other rooms. This typically means that one TV set, usually the one installed in the main lounge room or family room, is subscribed to the pay-TV service. At best, most users may deploy the second set-top box in a secondary lounge area like the rumpus / games room.

What is the layout preferred by TiVo, Sony and others?

The layout would consist of the following:

  • A “gateway device” or broadcast-network tuner connected to the cable service or satellite dish which “tunes” the pay-TV services and manages access to these services. It then makes them available over the home network using IP-based standards and technologies.  This device can also pass back information relating to “pay-per-view” content orders or interactive television from the endpoint devices. It can also handle on-demand content offered by pay-TV providers in the convention context and fulfil the content to the desired end-devices.
  • Standards-compliant endpoint devices (TV sets, DVRs, etc) that are connected to the home network and discover the services and content using technologies like DLNA. These devices can work with interactive services provided by the TV service provider and provide the viewer’s responses to the gateway device via the home network.

This is similar to the “broadcast-network tuner” setups like Devolo’s dLAN Sat, the Tivit ATSC mobile DTV WiFi tuner and the HD HomeRun tuner, where there is a digital-broadcast tuner that passes the signal via an IP-based home network to a hardware set-top box or software player program in a general-purpose computer so people can view the TV programme. These solutions typically used a non-standard control method and, in most cases, a single RF front-end so that only one TV set could operate at a time and they couldn’t work with a DVR or similar device.

Why develop this layout?

There is a desire for true competition in the multichannel pay-TV industry concerning end-user devices that is similar to what has occurred with telephone hardware since the Carterfone Decision in the USA and the Davidson Inquiry in Australia. One of the goals is to provide a TV navigation interface that encompasses off-air, pay-TV and IP-delivered content in the one electronic programme guide. This guide’s interface would be “skinned” to match the host device’s branding or any user customisations that are available to the device’s user. It also means that the user only needs to deal with one remote control to find whatever they want to watch.

This kind of layout could allow each TV set and each computer in the house to have access to all of the pay-TV services, rather than the common situation of having to deploy pay-TV set-top boxes to each place where there is a TV set.

There is the ability to upgrade the gateway to suit changing technological needs such as change of infrastructure or improvement in transmission or security protocols. That same ability also exists if the user wants to change providers or sign up to a supplementary-content service. Here, in all the situations above, there is no need to replace the end-user’s devices like DVRs or Internet-enabled TV sets, nor is there a need to replace software on any of the computers in the house to accommodate these changes.. In these cases, the software or firmware can discover the new services that are provided through the new hardware.

What needs to happen

One thing that needs to happen is high-profile implementation of common standard technologies like UPnP AV in the broadcast-reception sphere. This includes having endpoint and recording devices work to these standards when discovering and receiving broadcast signals via an IP network. It also includes the recognition of electronic-programme-guide data provided by these gateway devices, especially if the device that benefits from the data is a recording device like a “personal TV service”. It doesn’t matter whether the client device has the programme-guide data or the broadcast-network tuner has that data. This also includes handling situations where the same broadcast service can be received through different paths such as one or more over-the-air channels and / or a cable or satellite service.

In a similar light, broadband routers that work as the network-Internet “edge” could work as a “gateway” for IPTV services by storing channel lineups and service-authority information for these services.  This device may also have to support handling of interactive-TV sessions in situations where the endpoint device cannot handle the sessions itself.

As well, interactive-TV setups would need to work with an IP backhaul irrespective of whether the TV signal is delivered via RF (cable, classic-TV-aerial or satellite) means or via an IP feed. This also includes allowing access to downloaded assets associated with interactive content.

Conclusion

As mentioned before, what needs to happen is the use of common standards and device classes to support broadcast-network tuners; standard viewing and recording devices; and the home network in order to democratise the provision of pay-TV services.

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State of Internet access in Switzerland

 71 % des foyers suisses ont accès à Internet – DegroupNews.com (France – French language)

My comments about this article, including facts that I have translated from the article

This article appeared in DegroupNews (France’s home networking and IT portal) close to when Switzerland was announcing the rollout of their very-high-speed FTTH Internet service. This service is intended to start appearing through that country this year and is intended to be a multi-network setup where different provider groups can use their own fibre cluster like in France.

The article was stating that 71% of households in that country had the broadband “hot and cold running Internet” either through ADSL or cable technology. It also stated that most households were opting for “mid-tier” plans which would yield 2-10Mbps and that the market placed value on quality of service. There was also less likelihood for households to “jump ship” between the ISPs.

But there are some questions worth asking about this situation. One was whether the merger between Orange-Suisse and Sunrise was likely to have impact on the Swiss Internet market as in effect on prices or quality of service.

The other question that sorely needs to be answered is whether the rural neighbourhoods including those charming mountainside chalets are part of the 71% of households that have broadband Internet. This includes whether the rural services are being provided at the rated speeds that the customers agreed on. This rural-access issue has always been raised by me in this blog because it is too easy for an ISP or carrier to install a DSLAM in the rural telephone exchange and establish the Internet backbone yet forget to check on the quality of the telephone lines to the customers. This could lead to customers missing out on broadband Internet or receiving below-par service.

These facts can be easily skewed by the size of the country, its population and the size of that country’s urban areas compared to the size of a larger country like France, Germany, UK, the US or Australia. But it is worth noting what has happened in Switzerland which is a predominantly mountainous country, when factoring the provision of Internet service in to hilly areas.

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Internet radio in the car – why not?

A few weeks ago, a young teenager friend of mine had the Kogan internet radio, which I previously reviewed a sample of and had bought, “tuned” to an Iranian pop-music station that was broadcasting via the Internet. This youth, who had just turned 18 and was about to get his driver’s licence, was asking whether Internet radio in the car would be a reality.

Issues that limit this concept

One of the main issues would be for the wireless-broadband standards like 3G and WiMAX to support media-streaming in a reliable manner and at a cost-effective rate. Recently, there were issues with AT&T raising concerning about Apple iPhone users drawing down too much data, especially multimedia and another 3G provider wrote in to their subscriber terms and conditions a prohibition against media streaming.

The main issues were how these networks handle real-time content and whether they can stream this content reliably when the vehicle is travelling at highway speeds or faster. This also includes how to achieve this cost-effectively without limiting users’ ability to enjoy their service.

One way that it could be mitigated would be for mobile carriers and ISPs to look towards providing “sweeter” wireless-broadband deals, such as integrating voice and data in to single plans. Similarly,the providers could optimise their services to cater fir this kind of use.

Ways of bringing Internet radio to the speakers

Internet radio functionality integrated in car audio equipment

In this setup, the car-audio equipment, whether as part of the in-dash “head unit” or as an accessory tuner box, has access to a TCP/IP LAN and Internet through a modem or an outboard router. It uses any of the common Internet-radio directories like vTuner or Reciva to allow the user to select any of the audio streams that they want to listen to.

Wireless broadband modem integrated in or connected to car audio equipment

The car-audio equipment would have a wireless-broadband modem integrated in the unit or connected to it. The latter situation could be in the form of a USB “dongle” plugged in to the unit, or a mobile phone that supports wireless broadband being “tethered” by USB or Bluetooth to the unit. If the setup involves an integrated modem or an attached USB “dongle”, the setup may use authentication, authorisation and accounting data from a SIM installed in the unit or “dongle”; or simply use the data from a phone that uses Bluetooth SIM Access Profile.

This practice had been implemented in a Blaupunkt car stereo which was being used as a “proof-of-concept” for Internet radio in the car.

Use of an external wireless-broadband router

This method involves the use of a mobile wireless-broadband router which has an Ethernet connection and / or USB upstream connection with a standard “network-adaptor” device class along with a WiFi connection. Of course, the device would have a wireless-broadband connection on the WAN side, either integrated in to it or in the form of a user-supplied USB modem dongle or USB-tethered mobile phone. A typical example of this device would be the “Autonet” WiFi Internet-access systems being pitched for high-end North-American Chrysler-built vehicles or the “Ford Sync” integrated automotive network available on high-end North-American Ford-built vehicles that gains Internet access with a user-supplied USB wireless-broadband dongle.

Here, the car-audio equipment would have a network connection of some sort, usually an Ethernet connection or a USB connection that supports a common “network interface” device class and would be able to “pick up” Internet radio as mentioned before.

Internet radio functionality integrated in an Internet-access terminal

At the moment, this will become the way to bring Internet radio to most car setups in circulations for some time. The setup would typically represent a mobile phone or laptop computer with an integrated or connected wireless-broadband modem. This would have software or Internet access to the Internet-radio directories and stream the audio through Bluetooth A2DP, an FM transmitter or hardwired through a line-level audio connection, a cassette adaptor or an FM modulator.

Increasingly, there is interest from car-audio firms and Internet-media software firms to establish an application-programming interface between a computer or smartphone running selected Internet-radio directory software and the car sound system. This would typically require use of Bluetooth or USB and use a control method of navigating the directory, in a similar manner to how most current-issue car-audio equipment can control an attached Apple iPod.

The primary platform where this activity may take place would be the Apple iPhone, because of it being the most popular programmable smartphone platform amongst the young men whom the car-sound market targets.The setup was demonstrated at the Consumer Electronics Show 2010 in the form of Pioneer and Alpine premium head units controlling a front-end app for the Pandora “custom Internet radio” service installed in an iPhone connected to the head unit via the special connection cable that comes with that unit.

On the other hand, if a smartphone or MID that is linked to the head unit via Bluetooth A2DP does support the AVRCP profile properly, an Internet-radio application installed on that smartphone could achieve the same goal. This would require that the directory applications are able to expose links to the AVRCP commands and requests.There will also have to be requirements to allow “source selection” between multimedia applications through the AVRCP protocol.

Further comments

This concept will become part of the “connected vehicle” idea which provides real-time access to navigation, telematics, communication and entertainment in a moving vehicle or craft, especially as companies involved in this segment intend to differentiate their offerings. It may also be very desireable as an alternative to regular radio in those areas where most regular radio broadcasts leave a lot to be desired.

Once the cost and quality of wireless broadband Internet is brought down to a level that is par with reasonably-priced wired broadband service, then the concept of Internet radio in the car will become reality.

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Switchable graphics – an “overdrive switch” for PC graphics

Articles

 NVIDIA’s Optimus Technology Brings New Level of Switchable Graphics – Windows Experience Blog – The Windows Blog

From the horse’s mouth

NVIDIA’s article about the Optimus graphics system

My comments and explanation

The common graphics setup

The “IBM PC”-based computing platform started off with a “discrete” graphics setup where the system used a separate display card to put up data on the screen for the user to see. This allowed users to buy the graphics capability that they needed at the time of the system’s purchase yet upgrade this capability when their needs changed.

Then motherboard manufacturers and graphics-chip vendors moved towards placing the display circuitry on the motherboard, a practice that most other computer manufacturers engaged in for their platforms. This was preferred for computers that had an integrated display; as well as computers that were based on smaller stylish chassis designs. It also became a cost-saving measure for computer resellers whenever they designed their budget-priced models.

This method required that some of the system’s RAM (primary memory) was to be used for the graphics functionality and, in some cases, made use of the system’s CPU “brain” for some of the graphics work. This typically limited the performance of computer setups and those of us who valued graphics performance, such as gamers, designers or people involved in video production preferred to use the original “discrete” graphics arrangements.

Most systems, especially desktop systems, that had the integrated graphics chipsets also had an expansion slot for use with graphics cards and these setups typically had the graphics card that was in the expansion slot override the integrated graphics functionality. As well, a user who was upgrading a computer to discrete graphics also had to disconnect the monitor from the motherboard’s display output and reconnect it to the discrete graphics card’s display output.

As for laptop computers, there was a limitation in using discrete graphics there because it would lead to the computer running for a short time on its batteries, whereas a computer with low-end integrated graphics could run for a long time on its batteries. This also affected other applications where it was desirable to conserve power.

What does “Switchable Graphics” provide for the Intel-based computer platform.

The NVIDIA Optimus technology has brought around the concept of “switchable” graphics where a computer can have both integrated and discrete graphics. This practice is similar to a car that is equipped with an overdrive or “performance/economy” control.  Here, the driver runs the car in the “economy” mode or disengages the overdrive when they do their regular driving so they can conserve fuel. On the other hand, they engage the overdrive or set the transmission to “performance” mode if they want that bit of “pep” in the driving, such as for highway runs.

These computers will have a graphics chipset that can perform in a “discrete” manner for performance and use dedicated memory or in an “integrated” manner for power economy and use “spare” system memory. This will be accomplished with NVIDIA software that comes with computers that have this technology and run Windows 7. There is a special program in the software that works like the overdrive or “performance/economy” switch in the car. The program can be set up so the user switches modes manually or can be set to change modes dependent on whether the computer is running on external power or whether certain programs like games or video-editing software are being run.

Further comments

At the moment, the technology has just had its first public airing. This will usually mean that certain reliability issues will surface as the bugs get ironed out. It is also just optimised for laptop use but could be implemented in a “dual-chipset” manner for desktop and similar applications. In the desktop environment, the integrated graphics subsystem could work alongside an discrete aftermarket graphics subsystem and share outputs. This could allow, for example, a “gaming rig” to be less noisy and power-demanding while it is not being used for games and other graphics-intense tasks because the integrated graphics chipset could come in handy for the Windows shell or office applications.

Once this concept is worked out, this would allow users to avoid power and system heat tradeoffs if they want high-end graphics in their computing environment.

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Why I value the UPnP AV / DLNA Home Media Network standards

If anyone is wanting to question why my blog is geared towards UPnP-based network management standards, especially the UPnP AV / DLNA Home Media Network standards, I am writing this piece to state what I am about.

I am not a spokesman for UPnP or DLNA or any of the companies that are behind these standards, but do place a high value on networks, network hardware and network media software supporting any of the UPnP AV / DLNA Home Media Network Standards. One of the main reasons I value these standards is that they work across any IP-standard subnet and allow hardware manufacturers and software developers to integrate the home media network in to their creations without reinventing the wheel.

Due to the nature of UPnP, the user doesn’t need to “run backwards and forwards” between devices to make sure devices are pointing to the correct network shares and that usernames and passwords are correct on both the client device and the server. This can become more of a headache for devices that don’t have the full QWERTY keyboard on them and require the user to use “SMS-style” or “pick-n-choose” text entry which can increase room for user frustration and mistakes. They also make the establishment of these multimedia networks as idiot-proof as possible, which would benefit home and small-business users where there isn’t a dedicated IT team available..

I also agree that a standards-based IT environment encourages hardware and software innovation as well as encouraging a “common-sense” approach to technology. It can also lead to these concepts being implemented in the most cost-effective manner, which makes the device affordable for most people, yet there is the ability to provide premium-grade equipment. This has led to hardware that is compliant with this standard becoming increasingly ubiquitous.

I know that Windows supports the standard through Windows Media Player 10 and has full “three-box” implementation in Windows Media Player 12 which is part of Windows 7. As well, I have noted that the open-source community have developed servers and similar software that can work with a Linux system. This feature is now considered “par for the course” for nearly all consumer and small-business network-attached storage units.

As well, the Microsoft XBox360 and the Sony PS3, which are considered “must-haves” as far as games consoles are concerned, have support for this technology. Samsung and Sony are also gradually implementing UPnP AV / DLNA in to their “main lounge area” televisions, with Sony nearly implementing the technology in to all television applications. Most of the big-time electronics manufacturers who have a line-up of home-theatre receivers have this feature in at least the high-end models, with some manufacturers pushing the feature in to the mid-range models. As well, nearly all Internet radios can play audio material held on DLNA-based media servers.

So the main reason I place a lot of value in the UPnP AV / DLNA Home Media Network is because of the ease that there is in establishing a heterogeneous multimedia network with products that suit what you want to do.

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Smartphone Version of TwonkyMedia’s DLNA / UPnP Server Now Available | eHomeUpgrade

 Smartphone Version of TwonkyMedia’s DLNA / UPnP Server Now Available | eHomeUpgrade

Now the Android platform is moving closer to the DLNA Home Media Network. Other platforms like the Symbian S60 (Nokia N-Series) and the Apple iPhone have had software solutions that expose content held on their storage location to the DLNA Home Media Network, either as native software in the case of the Symbian S60 platform or as an “app” available through the platform’s usual software resources.

This implementation is very similar to TwonkyMedia Server in that it doesn’t have a “media controller” which could allow the user to “push” media to a “MediaRenderer” device like one of the Sony BRAVIA TVs.  It may come about if TwonkyMediia port the TwonkyMedia Manager program or a developer ports one of the iPhone DLNA controller apps to the Android platform.

It will be interesting to see who will come through with a media controller which will become more realistic with the Android smartphone and MID platform.

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