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Access Co. Joins Comcast’s RDK Club

Vendor Makes Software That Supports the DLNA Premium Video Profile for CE Devices 7/09/2013 3:51 AM Eastern

Access Co. Ltd., a maker of video software for mobile devices and digital TVs, is the latest vendor to announce it has licensed the Comcast-led Reference Design Kit (RDK), a pre-integrated software stack for QAM- and  IP-connected set-tops and gateways.

Access said it will use the license to develop software for deployment in equipment that supports HTML 5 and the DLNA Premium Video Guidelines, which enables the sharing of commercial video with retail consumer electronics devices securely over the home network. Those guidelines, which are a component of the tru2way home networking specification, use DTCP-IP Protected Streaming to secure playback of video on digital TVs, Blu-ray players, game consoles and set-top boxes. CableLabs approved the DTCP-IP spec in 2007.

Tokyo-based Access said NetFront Living Connect, its DLNA platform, and its Webkit-based HTML5 browser, NetFront Browser NX, both support the DLNA’s Premium Video Profile.

Among recent customer wins, Nintendo has selected Access’s NetFront Browser NX as the browser engine in its new Wii U game console. Last Fall, Access announced that TiVo has chosen NetFront Living Connect DLNA platform to enable Tivo Premiere DVRs to grab content from PCs, network attached storage devices, tablets, smartphones and other connected devices and display it on the TV.

“Our solution enables operators to deploy the RDK and at the same time enables operators to launch exciting new multi-room and multi-screen services as well as giving U.S. cable operators a pre-integrated route to meeting the FCC mandate for IP interoperability,” Access chief technology officer Kunihiro Ishiguro said, in a statement.

More than 80 vendors have secured licenses for the RDK, a platform that’s designed to accelerate the product development cycle for gateways and video client devices. Comcast is also eager to see other MSOs adopt the RDK. According to the RDK Central web site, J:COM, Japan’s largest cable operator, and Rogers Communications of Canada are among the MSOs that are currently members of the “RDK Community.” 

Time Warner Cable, meanwhile, said it plans to discuss its plans involving the RDK later this summer, noting last month that the platform will play a role in the development of the MSO's hosted navigation guide "and other future services."