2007 INTERNATIONAL CES, Las Vegas, Jan. 8, 2007– Qpixel Technology, an innovator in video compression silicon and software solutions, announced today the latest member of its low-power, Main Profile (MP) H.264 codec family, the Qpixel QL201B. Following the successful mass production of the QL201, the industry's first Main Profile H.264 encoder/decoder solution for consumer applications, the QL201B's advanced architecture and rich feature set is designed to enable superior quality video and extended hours of portable operation for consumer electronics devices.
Qpixel's latest entry is ideally suited for portable consumer devices such as digital cameras, camcorders, and portable media players, as well as digital home applications including higher efficiency PVR/DVR and IP video communications devices. According to various analyst firms, the combined Total Available Market (TAM) for H.264 encoding chips in these markets is estimated to be in excess of $1 billion by 2010.
“The adoption of the H.264 compression standard by broadcasters, content providers and consumer electronics manufacturers is rapidly positioning H.264 as the prime candidate for replacing MPEG-2 as the most commonly deployed compression standard,” said Michelle Abraham, principal analyst at In-Stat.
Qpixel's chips have already been incorporated into several consumer products at companies such as Buffalo, a household name in consumer electronics products in Japan. The Buffalo USB-attached device, the PC-MV9H/U2 TV tuner announced earlier this year, allows for efficient video storage onto a PC or portable media player device.
“Because of Qpixel's leading technology, we are the first in the market to offer customers higher efficiency storage benefits of the Main Profile H.264 standard,” said Junya Onisi, project lead, for Buffalo, Inc. “In addition, compatibility with the Sony PSP and Apple iPod has been a big hit with our customers.”
Qpixel focuses on achieving the right balance of features, including extremely low power, low-bit rate and low cost by using a flexible architecture and innovative algorithms, which more efficiently implement the highly complex Main Profile H.264. The QL201B features Main Profile H.264 codec support of full D1 at 30 frames per second (fps) with encoder/decoder up to 720×480 for highest quality video. The advanced video pre-processing and enhanced encoder processing techniques, as well as frame and field mode coding, rate control optimizations and more flexible input/output scaling, are designed to bring additional objective and subjective quality improvements to QL201B, over its predecessor.
“To gain traction with today's global CE Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs), silicon providers must achieve an optimized balance of the right market timing, superior video quality, customer differentiation and low power consumption, all at CE mass market price levels,” said Wen Hsu, president and CEO of Qpixel Technology. “With our highly flexible architecture, advanced silicon design methodology and strong focus on our customers' system-level design, we believe Qpixel can enable fast time-to-production. We've already been successful in advancing some of our customers to production-ready products within three months of engagement.”
For storage- and bandwidth-sensitive applications, such as those required in digital camcorders, videoconferencing or video streaming devices, products based on Qpixel's Main Profile H.264 codecs can store two to three times more content than what is achievable with MPEG-2, the most common compression format used today. In addition, with a power consumption level in the range of 200 mW and the newly added support for Mobile DDR memory, the QL201B is designed to enable OEMs to offer this increased storage on their portable consumer devices for even longer continuous recording time.
As a companion chip to an existing host controller in the system, the QL201B can be easily implemented as a quick and seamless design upgrade with minimal re-design, for fast OEM time-to-market. In set-top box appliances, QL201B enables higher efficiency PVR/DVR capability through, effectively doubling the content that can be stored.
QL201B is available today and is competitively priced at $15 in quantities of 10,000 units. Qpixel offers its customers comprehensive evaluation and design kits that include boards, firmware and all design files.
About Qpixel Technology
Qpixel Technology, an innovator in video compression silicon and software solutions, specializes in digital consumer applications that balance superior video quality with extended hours of portable operation at mass market prices. The first to ship H.264 Main Profile encoder technology in Oct. 2005, Qpixel's highly integrated, low power family of QL200 codecs offer advanced algorithms and rich features that slash bandwidth and storage requirements in digital audio/video consumer appliances such as digital video camcorders and cameras, IP set-top boxes and remote monitoring devices. Qpixel accelerates OEM time-to-production through its flexible architecture and advanced silicon design methodology that simulates target applications at the system level. This sets Qpixel apart from the competition and allows its OEM and service provider customers to offer new next-generation features and value-added services.
Qpixel is a fabless semiconductor designer and manufacturer with a U.S. office in Cupertino, Calif. and worldwide engineering and sales offices in Taiwan and Japan. For more information about Qpixel Technology visit www.qpixeltech.com.