& cplSiteName &

Next Up: RDK Streaming Sticks

Mari Silbey

Alticast is on a roll with RDK.

Alticast Corp. , a television software and integration specialist, is getting ready to demonstrate a new version of its software framework for high-definition multimedia interface (HDMI) streaming sticks at next week's RDK Users Conference in Denver.

Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) popularized the HDMI streaming stick form factor with the launch of Chromecast last summer. Numerous manufacturers, including LG Electronics Inc. (London: LGLD; Korea: 6657.KS) and Roku Inc. , have gone on to develop their own versions. The difference with Alticast is that it focuses specifically on the software for these HDMI adapters and is combining the cable-ready Reference Design Kit (RDK) platform with its own HTML5 application framework and support for Android apps.

Alticast has been testing a version of its streaming software for many months. The new release includes an RDK-based application storefront that operators can customize with their own branding and curated collection of HTML5 apps. The company says the latest software includes workflow tools for "application upload, versioning, and sales monitoring."

At the Consumer Electronics Show last month, Alticast showed how its streaming stick solution, working in tandem with a home media gateway, could deliver cable services side by side with web-based apps. In that demo, Alticast CTO John Carlucci presented several MSO-developed program guides running on an HDMI adapter, including one from Cox Communications Inc. (Cox has since confirmed that it's worked with Alticast on the proof of concept, but clarified that the testing process is still in the very early stages.) There were also links to apps from other popular consumer websites, including Twitter Inc. , Facebook , YouTube Inc. , and Netflix Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX). (See Alticast Primps for Vegas Spotlight.)

The cable industry has shown strong interest in thin clients like the HDMI streaming stick. Nick Thexton, CTO of Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO)'s service provider video infrastructure group, said last month that he is a fan of the form factor, and that he is starting to see a similar response from customers. Arris Group Inc. (Nasdaq: ARRS) senior vice president and general manager Kevin Keefe talked last fall about experimenting with an HDMI adapter product for the cable market. (See Cisco Exec: Thinner Pay-TV STBs Coming and Arris RDK Boxes Coming Soon.)

Given the growing popularity of RDK and HDMI streaming sticks, it's a good bet that we'll see more of the two platforms married together in 2014. Alticast will get the party started in Denver next week.

The Feb. 11 users conference, by the way, will be the second staged by the cable industry to spur the development and deployment of RDK, a standardized, pre-integrated software bundle designed to power IP and hybrid IP/QAM set-top boxes and media gateways. The private gathering is designed for the roughly 120 vendors, cable operators, chipmakers, and other firms that have licensed the RDK software bundle so far.

Two other licenses planning to demonstrate products next week are Espial Group Inc. and Silicon Software & Systems Ltd. (S3) . Espial will showcase "a high-performance HTML5 user experience" on multiple RDK boxes. S3 Group will highlight its testing and integration products and services for pay TV providers. In addition, Philip Brennan, vice president of technology for S3, will lead a panel discussion on how RDK code management works.

— Mari Silbey, special to Light Reading

(4)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
User Rank: Light Beer
2/17/2014 | 1:07:02 AM
Re: Hmm...
@michelle: Don't you think streaming is something to do with the network and the device has nothing to do with it in major scale ?  
User Rank: Light Sabre
2/16/2014 | 9:10:26 PM
Re: Hmm...
Better than Roku with features similar to Chromecast would work for me. Roku is super simple to use. It seems that ease of use is hard to find in similar streaming and 'smart' devices.
User Rank: Blogger
2/14/2014 | 6:30:48 PM
Re: Hmm...
Interesting, Michelle. Thanks for the feedback. So what would it take to attract you to the RDK streaming sticks? Do they need to be a lot better than Chromecast?  
User Rank: Light Sabre
2/10/2014 | 10:47:44 PM
The RDK streaming sticks sound promising but I remain skeptical until I can test one for myself. I bought the Chromecast device because it was cheap and there was promise of a future App Store. It's still a beta product (and buggy). I tested a different device called the SmartStick that used small HDMI form factor but it was terrible. HTML5 apps haven't quite lived up to the hype. Perhaps their day is still to come.
Light Reading’s Upskill U is a FREE, interactive, online educational resource that delivers must-have education on themes that relate to the overall business transformation taking place in the communications industry.
Friday, October 28, 1:00PM EDT
Security: The Plusses and Minuses of Open Source Software
Nick Feamster, Acting Director, Center for Information Technology Policy, Princeton University
Wednesday, November 16, 1:00PM EST
SDN 101
John Isch, Practice Director, Network & Voice, Orange Business Services
Friday, November 18, 1:00PM EST
SDN & Open Source
Christopher W. Rice, Senior Vice President of AT&T Labs, Domain 2.0 Architecture and Design
Wednesday, November 30, 1:00PM EST
SDN & the Software Defined Data Center
in association with:
From The Founder
Light Reading today starts a new voyage as part of a larger Enterprise.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
Charting the CSP's Future
Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it's going from two industry veterans.
LRTV Custom TV
OneAccess NFV Solutions

10|26|16   |   5:30   |   (0) comments

Antoine Clerget, CTO of OneAccess, discusses how his company has expanded its product line from enterprise-class routers to include a universal virtualized CPE as well as a suite of VNFs to help telco customers evolve to an NFV future.
LRTV Custom TV
The Journey Toward Carrier-Grade WiFi

10|26|16   |   3:39   |   (0) comments

In this Light Reading interview, Dave Sperling, CTO at Smith Micro Software and active participant of the WBA's policy working group, discusses the need for carrier-grade WiFi. Technical and business challenges slowing the fulfillment of this goal are addressed, as well as management strategies that will enable communication service providers to optimize end user ...
LRTV Custom TV
ZTE BBWF Highlights

10|26|16   |     |   (0) comments

At BBWF 2016, ZTE showed a broad range of innovative technologies that are kick-starting an ultrafast broadband journey.
LRTV Custom TV
Next-Generation Technology Beyond DOCSIS 3.1

10|20|16   |     |   (0) comments

At SCTE 2016, Huawei's Liu Jianhua speaks with Alan Breznick for an exclusive interview.
LRTV Custom TV
Hybrid Video Solutions to Change TV, Change Future

10|20|16   |     |   (0) comments

At SCTE 2016, Huawei's Ian Locke speaks with Alan Breznick for an exclusive interview.
LRTV Custom TV
Huawei Future-Oriented Giga Coax Network

10|20|16   |     |   (0) comments

At SCTE 2016, Huawei's Allen Wang speaks with Alan Breznick for an exclusive interview.
LRTV Custom TV
Huawei at SCTE 2016

10|20|16   |     |   (0) comments

Join Alan Breznick of Light Reading and take a sneak peek at the Huawei booth at SCTE 2016.
LRTV Custom TV
Assuring Network Quality in a Rapidly Changing Environment

10|20|16   |     |   (0) comments

As the rate of change and complexity increases in agile networks, the importance of introducing DevOps methodologies for integrating active test and assurance solutions throughout the full service lifecycle becomes critical to ensure that customers are experiencing the service quality they demand. The industry landscape is changing, and software-based test and ...
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
A10 Networks on Service Providers' Industry Needs

10|20|16   |     |   (0) comments

Light Reading's Steve Saunders hears how A10 enables service providers to accelerate, secure and optimize their application delivery to drive down costs, enhance service availability, and better respond to customer requirements, so they can improve customer satisfaction, monetize their network, and grow revenues.
LRTV Custom TV
New NFV Use Cases for Cable TV

10|19|16   |     |   (0) comments

A large number of NFV use cases are focused on the enterprise domain, looking at virtualization of customer-premises equipment (CPE). To date, there has been little focus on the use cases and business case for virtualization of the video content delivery networks required to deliver unicast and streaming video to consumers. Amdocs commissioned Analysys Mason to ...
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Meet the Future Workforce: New Faces, Expectations & Motivations

10|19|16   |   5:33   |   (1) comment

Millennials and their younger peers, Gen Z, expect more out of their network and more out of their work. Intel's Lynn Comp shares how the industry can prepare for this new generation of workers.
LRTV Custom TV
ZTE Global Services User Congress 2016 Highlights

10|19|16   |     |   (0) comments

ZTE held its 2nd Global Service User Conference in Dusseldorf on October 13-14. Representatives from network operators, leading industry analysts and ZTE senior expertsattended the event, exploring the best practice in managed services and the vision to transform network operations into the operations center of the future (OpCF) in the software-defined networking ...
Upcoming Live Events
November 3, 2016, The Montcalm Marble Arch, London
November 30, 2016, The Westin Times Square, New York City
December 1, 2016, The Westin Times Square, New York, NY
December 6-8, 2016, The Westin Excelsior, Rome
May 16-17, 2017, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
All Upcoming Live Events
Hot Topics
Attacks Have Major Internet Sites on the Ropes
Brian Santo, Senior editor, Test & Measurement / Components, Light Reading, 10/21/2016
Trump: Dump AT&T/TW & Comcast/NBC
Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading, 10/24/2016
T-Mobile: AT&T & TW Means Ma Bell Not Focused on Mobile
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 10/24/2016
Layer3 TV Comes to Town, Hints at Future
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 10/21/2016
Verizon Wants More Data on Yahoo Breach
Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading, 10/20/2016
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Join us for an in-depth interview between Steve Saunders of Light Reading and Alexis Black Bjorlin of Intel as they discuss the release of the company's Silicon Photonics platform, its performance, long-term prospects, customer expectations and much more.
There's no question that, come 2020, 5G technology will turn the world's conception of what mobile networking is on its head. Within the world of 5G development, Dr. ...
Animals with Phones
'Oh, Were You Looking for This?' Click Here
'I was just playing some games...'
Live Digital Audio

A vital part of increasing the number of women in comms is transforming the ways companies can support and empower women. While progressive company policies that support both men and women in achieving work-life balance are a step in the right direction, creating a company culture that supports those policies can at times be more challenging.

During this show, we'll talk to Lynn Comp, Senior Director of Industry and Sales Enabling (ISE) in the Network Platforms Group at Intel, about why those challenges exist and how companies can overcome them. She'll provide insight into how Intel has worked to create a culture that supports work-life balance, and provide steps and guidance for other companies wishing to do the same. We will also leave plenty of time to get your questions answered live on the air.