Future of TV at ISSCC 2012
February 21, 2012 - San Francisco, CA - The Future of TV panel at the ISSCC conference discussed the history of TV and also some directions that the platform may move in both near and far term. TV is an interesting platform as it over the wireless & RF space for broadcast, wireline communication and data for HDMI and other cable interfaces, imaging for video capture and replay, and digital logi/processors/codecs & memory for the core of the digital Flat Panel Display (FPD). As the price of TVs is dropping, new technology and features are being added to the platform. These features are based around scan rates and resolutions for the FPD, support for multiple Stereoscopic 3D displays, digital TV broadcast & receivers and IP TV/ IP based broadcast.
The platform has brought changes to the viewers and the lifestyle associated with it in the past 80 years. The first is freedom from distance 80 years ago, letting the viewer see places they could not go from their homes. The viewer was freed from imaging color, with color broadcast 50-60 years ago. Home recording freed the viewer from watching at a fixed time 30-40 yrs ago. Recently, Stereo 3D allowed for freedom of depth on the image 3-4 years ago, but the acceptance curve and the technology is not finalized as yet. Higher resolutions with more photorealistic images are still to come to free the viewer from creating detail, and being immersive in the environment.
The challenge on the platform to move forward is should it be a uniform dedicated product or will it be a blend of the service/platform/device triad bound by delivering an experience for the content. This experience has always been the ultimate goal of the TV and why it is the main screen and focus of media in the home.
The three Japanese speakers focused on 3D and increased resolutions and frame rates as the near term future of TV. Moving the resolutions up to 4Kx2K with 60hz frame rate is a next obtainable step. The issues for display of these images is in progress, but the delivery of the data is still a concern. Toshiba addressed some of the issues and solutions being investigated for glasses free 3D on a large screen for a multi-viewer environment. These are different from the mobile single user solutions today, and has a great deal to do with the processing capability and power envelop available for the solution. Finaly Nagoya University presented on standards and technology needed for FTV or Free Viewpoint Television. This is the step beyond the currently supported Blu-Ray 3D support for Multi-view Video Coding (MVC) which supports different camera views and reference points in content. FTV increased the point of view for the content to be user decided in a 3D space. This brings new challenges to interactive control, content size and display methods, but is the next generation in immersive environments.
The session focused on technology aspects and notably semiconductor based solutions for the next generation of immersion in the TV platform. Other sensory supplements to the experience, smell, tactile feedback, sound enhancements are already past the semiconductor enabling phase and are focusing on incorporation into the content and data delivery issues. As a result, they were only reviewed on a cursory basis in the discussion.