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Cable Show 2009: CableLabs To Provide Tru2way Reference Implementation

Complete Cable Show 2009 coverage from Multichannel News

CableLabs plans to release a source-code reference implementation of its tru2way specifications for interactive TV, with the aim of accelerating development and deployment of devices and applications based on the technology.

The idea is to give device manufacturers and application developers a single, compliant software stack for building tru2way-enabled products and services.

CableLabs plans to publicly launch the reference implementation later this year under both a free open source license and a commercial license. The reference implementation will be available for use on a PC, so developers won't need a cable headend to build to tru2way.

"As we launch tru2way capability in additional markets and on other devices, including set-top boxes, providing our equipment manufacturing partners with a reference implementation supports our goal of bringing more interactivity to more customers," said Sree Kotay, senior vice president and chief software architect for Comcast, in a statement.

"With CableLabs providing a reference implementation and a compliance test plan, tru2way vendors and developers will have immediate access to a common source code that implements new features and functions on the tru2way platform," said Phil Won, Time Warner Cable senior director of product management.

CableLabs also said it will issue updates for the reference implementation and a new compliance test plan as new features are added to the tru2way spec.

The cable consortium is working with Sun Microsystems, which will host the reference implementation in an "open-source community" within the OpenCable Project located on Sun's site.

CableLabs noted that its tru2way specifications are based on Sun's phoneME Java stack, which is the same platform used by Blu-ray DVD players and the DVB Multimedia Home Platform.