At CES, watch out for wireless high-def TV

Wireless HD to try to move ahead in wireless consumer electronics devices, says backer.

At the Consumer Electronics Show earlier this year, Samsung showed off a plasma TV that got data from an 802.11(n) link.

At CES in January 2008, you should expect to see a lot of TVs demoed with WirelessHD, a wireless protocol with a lot more bandwidth.

Wireless TV? Are you out of your mind? CNET Networks

That's the world from John LeMoncheck, president and CEO of SiBeam, the chip company that has devised the spec and will come out with chips based on it. (I spoke to him a few days ago at the AlwaysOn Stanford Summit). Several consumer electronics manufacturers will likely show off TVs and other devices containing WirelessHD chips.

LG, Matsushita (Panasonic), NEC, Samsung, Sony and Toshiba have all pledged support and undying love to the WirelessHD spec.

WirelessHD chips operate at 60GHz. Traditionally, it's used by the military for ship-to-ship communication. The signals will carry up to 4 gigabits per second--good enough for wireless 1080p--pass through walls, and travel far enough to connect the rooms in most people's homes. You could probably even do home X-rays with that.

WirelessHD, of course, isn't the only wireless protocol for consumer electronics devices in town. Last year at CES, Neosonik, Avega Systems and Amimon (which has a wireless HDMI chip) all showed off prototypes. Samsung and Philips also showed off 802.11(n) equipment. So there's lots of interest in the field. WirelessHD, though, does seem to have a lot of interest among major manufacturers.

About the author

    Michael Kanellos is editor at large at CNET News.com, where he covers hardware, research and development, start-ups and the tech industry overseas.

     

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