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Cable Technology Feature Article

January 09, 2012

Comcast Cable Selects GreenPeak Chipset

By Bob Emmerson, TMC European Editor

Comcast Cable Communications has selected GreenPeak’s controller chips in conjunction with ZigBee RF4CE technology for use in TV remote controls for its Xfinity TV service. The companies also are in the process of standardizing an MSO profile protocol optimized for service operators’ needs which will be open for all operators and CE companies to adopt.

GreenPeak has been working closely with Comcast (News - Alert) to deliver an enhanced remote control experience that offers greater responsiveness and non-line-of-sight device operation. Because this new technology uses radio frequencies, the set-top box no longer needs to be placed within a direct-line-of-sight of the remote control. Consumers can now place their set-top boxes in a range of locations within the home, including behind television sets or inside cabinets. This development also extends the battery life of the remote control to as much as three years.

The Comcast RF remote control uses GreenPeak ZigBee RF4CE communication controller chips and is a hybrid RF/IR solution that supports both legacy infrared (IR) equipment as well as new RF set-top box equipment, which supports RF4CE technology. Comcast has deployed RF remotes with the first of its Xcalibur products, the next-generation Xfinity TV service currently available in Augusta (News - Alert), GA. Comcast also plans to use the new RF remote control to support legacy TVs and set-top boxes based on IR protocols currently used by their customers. 

Cees Links, CEO of GreenPeak, said, “We are proud that Comcast has selected the GreenPeak RF4CE radio chips for integration in their innovative video platform. The excellent radio performance and range, as well as the ease of integration benefits Comcast’s new hybrid remote control implementation, which provides superior RF4CE features while supporting IR when needed. GreenPeak has offered new ways to solve difficult system design challenges. Our silicon and integration support can help reduce cost and complexity, while enabling more features and functionality.”

 Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO East 2012, taking place Jan. 31-Feb. 3 2012, in Miami, FL. ITEXPO (News - Alert) offers an educational program to help corporate decision makers select the right IP-based voice, video, fax and unified communications solutions to improve their operations. It's also where service providers learn how to profitably roll out the services their subscribers are clamoring for – and where resellers can learn about new growth opportunities. For more information on registering for ITEXPO registration click here.

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Bob Emmerson (News - Alert) is TMC's European Editor. To stay abreast of the latest news affecting the European market, check out Bob's columnist page.

Edited by Rich Steeves