Tuesday, July 11, 2006

UPnP Releases New Audio Video Specifications for Home Networking

The UPnP Forum released version 2 of its UPnP Audio Video specifications (UPnP AV v2) for AV-oriented home networking.

The UPnP AV specifications use the UPnP Device Architecture specifications -- the core interoperability technology for all UPnP enabled devices -- allowing different companies to build home network products that automatically locate and identify each other without any end-user configuration.

The UPnP Forum said its new UPnP AV v2 specifications will enable consumers to identify and record programs and other digital content for later viewing over home networks. These new specifications also simplify playback of premium digital content without interfering with the underlying DRM (digital rights management) technology used to protect the premium content.

These new entertainment experiences are created by adding capabilities to the UPnP AV MediaServer and MediaRenderer device classes that allow a higher level of interoperability between MediaServers and MediaRenderers from different manufacturers. MediaServer devices include DVD players, VCRs, PCs, personal video recorders (PVRs), CD players, MP3 players, satellite and cable set-top boxes, TVs, etc. MediaRenderer devices include televisions, PCs, digital media adapters, stereo systems, and personal music players.

The UPnP AV v2 specifications are fully backward compatible with the UPnP AV v1 specifications.

"The UPnP AV specifications provide an interoperability infrastructure, which enables device manufacturers to deliver innovative AV products that allow an end user to purchase products from different manufacturers, bring them home, plug them into their home network, and they just work together -- it's that simple," said John Ritchie, co-chair of the UPnP Forum's AV Working Committee and staff engineer, Intel Digital Home Group.


  • UPnP device and service standards have been defined and published for Internet gateways/routers, audio-video media devices, printers, scanners, climate control, lighting and wireless LAN access points.

  • The UPnP architecture leverages TCP/IP and other Web technologies to enable seamless integration of these devices into existing network infrastructures. UPnP technology can be implemented on nearly any operating system and works with essentially any type of physical networking media that supports IP -- wired or wireless.

  • There are now more than 220 UPnP certified products. The UPnP Implementers Corporation (UIC) is the non-profit corporation that promotes the adoption of UPnP technology by manufacturers of hardware and software products. The UIC administers the UPnP device certification process and the UPnP mark licensing.

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