Thursday, December 13, 2007

HDMI and USB fight over TV

This is like one of those living room battles over who gets the remote control.

I am told the USB Implementers Forum is working on a version of USB that aims to link mobile devices to TVs. The spec is supposed to be out sometime in 2008. A USB-IF spokeswoman said the new spec aims to carry compressed high def video and should complement HDMI. I don't have much hard data on this, so I welcome any comments on it posted here or at

The interesting wrinkle here is that while USB has got significant traction in digital cameras and is starting to take hold in cellphones, it ain't nowhere to be seen in TVs. That's the terrain of HDMI, and Silicon Image, HDMI's backer, has been showing the financial community foils about how it sees mobile devices like cameras and cellphones as its next big expansion area.

Of course these wired guys will have to tussle with all the wireless options springing up as well—Wi-Fi and its derivatives, Bluetooth and derivatives, UWB and 60 GHz radios to name the main ones. This cat fight alone could make for an interesting CES next month.

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