Broadcom Intros Cable Chip

Broadcom announced the industry's first front-end cable TV set-top box chip with integrated channel bonding technology

January 5, 2006

2 Min Read

LAS VEGAS -- Broadcom Corporation (Nasdaq: BRCM), a global leader in wired and wireless broadband communications semiconductors, today announced the industry's first front-end cable TV set-top box chip with integrated channel bonding technology. Channel bonding is a DOCSIS(R) 3.0 feature that dramatically increases the transmission speed of a cable TV network, enabling multi service operators (MSOs) to migrate to an all- Internet Protocol (IP) network platform. Addressing voice, video and data, the all-IP network enables MSOs to provide significant benefits such as additional cable and local broadcast channels, content flexibility and improved network efficiency.

Channel bonding combines several DOCSIS channels together to significantly increase data rates when compared to the speed of today's cable modems. Announced today is the new Broadcom(R) BCM3255 set-top box chip that incorporates this channel bonding technique. This new chip can support up to 120 Megabits per second (Mbps) downstream data rates, enabling next generation media centers to support an all-IP network platform, such as Comcast's RNG family of devices. Moving to an all IP-based platform for voice, video, and data content helps to decrease MSOs network operating costs while enabling the network to support fast high-definition video downloads, high bit rate services and other IP voice and video services.

"Increasing the speed and performance capabilities of the cable network is a key element for MSOs as more and more telecommunications operators install fast, fiber-to-the-curb networks," said Daniel Marotta, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Broadcom's Broadband Communications Group. "Our new cable TV set-top box chip sets a benchmark for the industry enabling MSOs to deploy new set-top boxes and media centers today that can support the transition to an all-IP network."

"Channel bonding is a key technology that will enable Comcast to continue our migration to an IP Platform," said David Fellows, Comcast Cable CTO. "The integration of channel bonding in silicon, like the Broadcom solution, is a significant step towards combining the power of DOCSIS and IPTV."

Broadcom designed its new BCM3255 set-top box chip to interface with its BCM7400 dual high-definition (HD) advanced video coding (AVC)/VC/MPEG-2 decoder chip. The BCM7400, also announced today, is a single-chip backend solution that supports the latest video compression technologies, including AVC (the ITU and ISO joint standard) and VC-1 (the Society for Motion Picture and Television Engineers or SMPTE standard) for HD programming.

Broadcom Corp. (Nasdaq: BRCM)

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