Tru2way Guides Fling DVR Content In CableLabs Demo

Tru2way-based interactive program guides from Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Cox Communications were in the mix at a recent CableLabs-hosted multivendor interop event, which showed DVR content delivered over home networks to Internet-connected HDTVs, videogame consoles and PCs.

CableLabs said representatives from seven of its cable operator companies and 10 industry vendors attended the tru2way Home Networking interop event, held March 28 to April 1 at the consortium's Louisville, Colo., headquarters.

Tru2way is the consumer-facing name of CableLabs' OpenCable Application Platform.

Tru2way set-top makers in the mix were Cisco Systems, Motorola and Samsung Electronics. Manufacturers of devices certified for the Digital Living Network Alliance (DLNA) media sharing specification were Samsung, Sony Computer Entertainment America and Sony Electronics, while DLNA technology component suppliers included Access Systems, AwoX, Irdeto and NDS.

The event used IPGs that integrate tru2way technology with multiroom DVR capability from Comcast, Cox and TWC. The demo showed premium DVR content shared over a home network in a secure manner using DTCP-IP among multiple tru2way set-top boxes and DLNA devices.

"Comcast is very pleased to see our program guide running on set-top boxes that have integrated the tru2way reference implementation software," Comcast senior vice president of premises technology Steve Reynolds said in a statement.

Comcast is using CableLabs' open-source tru2way middleware reference implementation as the standard operating system "stack," and has selected NDS to be the prime integrator on a project to develop and test new tru2way applications and devices. Comcast and TWC were among those contributing code for the tru2way reference implementation.

Mike Hayashi, Time Warner Cable executive vice president of architecture, development and engineering, commented about the CableLabs event, "A single environment where multiple device manufacturers can run our latest guides and other applications provides us with great insight for future development."

"We were very pleased with the tru2way home networking advances on display at this interoperability event," Cox executive director of interactive services engineering Craig Smithpeters added. "There were some engaging demonstrations from a cross-section of companies working together on standards-based technologies."

In July 2010, CableLabs hosted a similar interop event demonstrating tru2way-based DVRs working with DLNA devices.

The devices on the home network communicated and shared content using one of three technologies: Ethernet, MoCA 1.1 (Multimedia over Coax Alliance) and Wi-Fi.

In addition, the participants used a DLNA application on a mobile phone to control devices on the home network. The mobile phone was used to select content from a home network device and to control playing that content on another device such as a TV set, as well as provide pause, rewind and fast-forward functions.

CableLabs' tru2way software reference implementation was also included in the multivendor interoperability scenarios. In February 2011, the R&D consortium issued the latest version of the Home Networking extension specification as part of the bundle 1.1.5 release of the specification, as well as an associated reference implementation and testing tools.

According to CableLabs, the DLNA Interoperability Guidelines are the foundation tru2way's home networking specifications. The premium cable content is protected using DTCP-IP as it is transmitted over the home network. CableLabs joined the DLNA last December as a promoter member.