STMicroelectronics has launched new set-top box ICs which are not just an upgrade but designed with a new architecture.
High definition HEVC (High Efficiency Video Coding) Liege3 family of chipsets for entry Set-Top-Box markets consists of STiH337/STiH332 for satellite STB, STiH372 for cable STB, and STiH307/STiH302 for IPTV STB. HEVC (High Efficiency Video Coding) feature in these ICs is the key market differentiator.
ST’s new set-top-box ICs support scalable hardware and software architecture making it more flexible and configurable to reach optimized price/user experience ratio across the different HD HEVC entry set-top-box segments. All chipsets in the new ARM-based family are pin-to-pin compatible to facilitate design re-use among the different broadcast technologies. Software compatibility with ST’s Cannes SoC family enables OEMs to benefit from the comprehensive ecosystem in order to easily design innovative client boxes on multiple middleware products.
Addressing the satellite markets, the STiH337/STiH332 SoCs implement a new DVB-S2X demodulation scheme enabling MSOs (Multiple System Operators) to leverage compression-efficiency improvements brought by the HEVC technology. This results in the enhancement of S2X spectral efficiency for optimal use of the satellite transponder capacity.
“Our new ARM-based chipset family strengthens ST’s presence in all the segments of the very dynamic HD HEVC entry set-top-box broadcast markets. It also underlines our strong engagement and capacity to deliver innovative solutions,” said Philippe Notton, Group Vice President and General Manager of STMicroelectronics’ Consumer Product Division. “With the new Liege3 SoC family, MSOs can maximize the lifetime of their HEVC investments with a chipset platform that integrates enough processing power for future evolution while today supporting all the latest key interfaces and broadcast technologies for optimal spectrum usage.”
Key features of ST’s new set-top-box SoC family that ranges from entry-level 2.5 K DMIPS without GPU up to 5K DMIPS with embedded GPU include:
ARM CPU capable of delivering up to 5K DMIPS for advanced user interface and complex middleware;
Mali 400 GPU for fluid user interface and HTML5 support on connected platforms;
HEVC 10-bit performance proven by extensive interoperability tests performed with all major encoder providers;
A rich set of future-proof connectivity options including Ethernet, USB 3, PCIe, HDMI;
Integrated DVB-C or DVB-S2X demodulator;
Advanced security engine enabling CAS- and DRM-based secure video- content protection;
28nm FD-SOI (Fully Depleted Silicon on Insulator) technology, providing highly-efficient RF and analog integration as well as outstanding power efficiency at all operating levels, enabling very small fan-less designs.
Reinforcing ST’s commitment to serve the HD entry-level set-top-box markets, the new Liege3 SoC family is currently sampling to lead customers and will be demonstrated in ST’s private demo suite at IBC 2015.
In a related announcement, Wyplay and STMicroelectronics announced that the Frog Client turnkey solution for connected zappers or personal video recorders (PVR) will be offered free of charge to OEM members of the Frog Community designing their digital TV set-top-box products with ST’s new Liege3 System-on-Chip (SoC) family. This bundled offer may be extended to other ST product families in the future.
“The Frog Client turnkey software fits perfectly with our Liege3 SoC family,” said Philippe Notton, Group Vice President and General Manager, Consumer Product Division, STMicroelectronics. “Wyplay’s Frog provides all-in-one ready-to-ship middleware with user interface stack, and allows us to harness the richness of the Frog Community that already counts more than 20 set-top-box OEMs.”
“ST’s new Liege3 SoC family meets the needs of OEMs to address all the segments of the very dynamic HD HEVC set-top-box broadcast markets,” said Jacques Bourgninaud, Wyplay CEO. “The ST/Wyplay bundle takes the pain out of the equation for OEMs to quickly deploy competitive products offering modern user experience.”