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Straight down the wire

HomePlug Powerline Alliance members have been promoting powerline networking success at the recent IP&TV World Forum.

HomePlug Powerline Alliance members have been promoting powerline networking success at the recent IP&TV World Forum

The HomePlug Powerline Alliance is the worldwide industry group for powerline communications networking standards, which enables a home’s electrical wires to distribute broadband Internet, IPTV and HD video, digital music and smart energy applications. The Alliance is an industry-led initiative with 65 member companies that creates specifications, marketing and certification programmes to accelerate worldwide adoption of powerline networking with HomePlug technology.

The Alliance works with key stakeholders to ensure HomePlug specifications are designed to meet the requirements of IPTV service providers, power utilities, equipment and appliance manufacturers, consumer electronics and other constituents. The HomePlug Certified Logo programme is the powerline networking industry's largest compliance and interoperability certification programme and has certified over 270 devices.

Sponsor members include Broadcom Corporation, Cisco, Duke Energy, GE Energy, MStar Semiconductor, Qualcomm Atheros, Renesas Electronics, and STMicroelectronics.

Demonstrating the convergence of broadcast and broadband technologies, the HomePlug Powerline Alliance has announced the major presence of HomePlug members at the recent IP&TV World Forum. This event brings together broadcasters from a variety of platform backgrounds – smart TV, OTT, cable, satellite, terrestrial, and telco–to-network – looking at the opportunities presented by IP delivery. The conference has a particular focus on service providers from around the world.

“Home networks are now carrying high volumes of entertainment content, and consumers expect uninterrupted viewing experiences,” commented Rob Ranck, President of the HomePlug Powerline Alliance. “To deliver this experience, service providers are seeing the benefits of powerline technologies to create a broadband-strength network inside the home. Our members know that being HomePlug-certified ensures a level of confidence across service providers worldwide, and helps them define the next generation of standards.”

Earlier this year, The HomePlug Powerline Alliance announced the availability of the HomePlug AV2 specification. This new HomePlug technology enables significant performance and coverage for broadband networking over powerline wires while remaining fully interoperable with existing HomePlug AV / IEEE 1901 compliant products used in millions of consumers' homes and widely available worldwide from service providers and retail stores.

HomePlug's digital entertainment technology provides networking over existing wiring within the home to any device with an Ethernet port or even to extend the range of a Wi-Fi router. The HomePlug AV2 specification is based on more than a decade of real-world experience and extensive field tests conducted by the alliance's AV Technical Working Group validating in-home coverage and performance across five countries with wide variances in home construction.

HomePlug AV2 technology supports gigabit-class broadband speeds, making it ideal for Internet video, multi-room IPTV, online gaming, HD audio and other high demand networking uses, particularly when using multiple HD devices simultaneously.

HomePlug Certified products are available in retail channels from many manufacturers and are being deployed by more than 30 service providers globally. The HomePlug powerline technology family includes HomePlug AV for broadband applications, HomePlug Green PHY (GP) for smart grid/smart energy applications, and now HomePlug AV2 for next-generation broadband speeds. HomePlug Certified products with HomePlug AV, AV2 and GP technology are fully interoperable and support the IEEE 1901 powerline communications standard.

"HomePlug AV2 is the much anticipated and logical follow on to the successful HomePlug AV specification," said Kurt Scherf, Senior Analyst for Parks Associates. "AV2 greatly increases the capacity of home networks to support ultra-high speed applications by increasing the network's bandwidth and also greatly improves reliable delivery of that bandwidth to all areas of the home."

Ranck concluded by stating: "The explosion in demand for robust home networking is driving the need for ultra-high speed broadband across the home. HomePlug AV2 leads the way in enabling a variety of manufacturers to deliver this capability with maximum interoperability."

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