DTV decoding chip market set to grow

The global transition from analogue to digital TV broadcast is spurring TV makers to offer sets with more advanced video decoding chips capable of working with multiple and new video standards, according to iSuppli Corp. Global shipments of multi-standard video-decoder-equipped televisions are expected to rise to 966,000 units this year, up from zero in 2007. By 2012, shipments will rise to 41.7 million units. "In the past, digital cable, satellite and terrestrial TV broadcasting relied on MPEG-2 as the video encoding standard," said Randy Lawson, senior analyst for DTV and display electronics at iSuppli. "However, newer systems increasingly are adopting more advanced codecs, such as MPEG-4 or its competitor, the Audio and Video Coding Standard (AVS) in China." Across the globe, the transition away from analog and toward digital television broadcasting is proceeding. Some regions, like North America, have nearly completed the transition, while other parts of the world'like South America and regions of the Middle East'are just getting started defining which digital standard to adopt and when to schedule their Analogue Shut Off (ASO). "The transition to digital broadcasting has been delayed in some regions and countries, allowing time for underlying technologies to advance further," Lawson said. "Many of those countries will reap a benefit from their deferral, since it has afforded them an opportunity to begin their digital terrestrial television service with more advanced and more bandwidth-efficient systems based on the latest signal-processing technologies." Regions such as Eastern Europe and Scandinavia as well as countries such as France and China now are rolling out digital TV broadcast systems that use these newer technologies, paving the way for broader adoption in the future.

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