CES 2017: 50 years of automotive and TV innovation

CES 2017: 50 years of automotive and TV innovation

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is turning 50 in 2017, which gives us a perfect opportunity to look back on how the automotive and video worlds have evolved.

TV: from one channel to TV Everywhere

Younger readers of our blog might not remember it, but back in the 1970s, watching TV was a lot less diverse than today. Germany was divided into two separate countries with radically different TV cultures and the rest of Europe consisted almost entirely of public broadcasters, with British TV airing just three channels: BBC1, BBC2 and ITV. Today, each consumer can access a plethora of channels from a number of sources (cable, IP, Over-The-Top, satellite, terrestrial) and across an incredibly wide range of topics such as sports, news, reality TV and TV series.

In addition, the rise of new video sources like YouTube and the move that social media platforms are turning into smaller scale broadcasters is providing viewers with access to even more content. This in turn has led to the requirement for good quality Electronic Programme Guides (EPGs) and search engine, as well as a need for better user experience solutions.

While this may come as a surprise to many, even though there wasn’t much variety in the content people had access to back in the 1970s, the Video Cassette Recorder (VCR) was born in that era. An incredibly viral video last year showed that children today have no clue how this device works anymore, which demonstrates that we are indeed in a completely digital era for consumption, storage and security. Today, viewers use the cloud to store their content, restart a programme exactly where they left it off and appreciate lifelike details using Ultra HD and High Dynamic Range (HDR) ready TVs.

We are very excited to see that our product portfolio is at the intersection of these technologies, enabling broadcasters and operators to offer state-of-the-art experiences across multiple devices and content sources. ACCESS Twine™ provides content aggregation & data collection for analytics features that can be easily integrated within operator-powered apps to ensure that consumers stay within the operator’s branded environment for all their media needs. Our solution also facilitates secure media re-distribution across all platforms, including support for state-of-the-art end-to-end DRM and DLNA® VidiPath™. Our NetFront™ Browser family also enables a seamless HTML5 powered experience across all screens – from smartphones and tablets through to the next generation TV screens. ACCESS’ solutions include WebKit-based NetFront™ Browser NX and Chromium-based NetFront™ Browser BE, both available as HbbTV editions.

Automotive: 50 years preparing for the driverless car?

‘The Car’, a thriller about a rogue driverless car committing murders in a remote area of the US, was released back in 1977. While the evil machine trope wasn’t new in any way, it shows how far back we started thinking that our cars would drive themselves one day. Cars today may be smart, capable of parking themselves and towing each other, but the days of the fully autonomous, driverless car are still a few years away as the industry solves fundamental challenges of security and passenger experience.

The automotive revolution is moving up a gear and we’re proud to be an active player in one of the most exciting areas of technology today, such as In-Vehicle Infotainment (IVI). We are now preparing for the next wave of technology innovation that will be presented on the show floor and discussed in a number of tracks, including Automotive and personal mobility, Connect2Car and Vehicle Technology.

We have been involved in the movement towards more connectivity and entertainment in the car for a number of years, working with OEMs and Tier 1s alike to build the in-vehicle infotainment experiences of the future. Using standards-based proprietary solutions, we are opening the door to seamless solutions that can be accessed directly via the head unit or the driver’s own mobile device plugged into the car for a truly personal feel.

As members of the GENIVI Alliance, we will be showcasing how ACCESS Twine™ for automotive and our HTML5-based NetFront™ Browser family enable car infotainment to support 2- and 3-way media sharing for Head-Units, Rear-Seat Entertainment and Bring-Your-Own-Devices, HTML5 based browsing, control, applications and media re-distribution playback together with usage data creation and cloud components for easy service integrations.

We hope you are as excited about what the future holds for TV Everywhere and IVI as we are, and we look forward to seeing you in Las Vegas! To register to meet with us at the GENIVI Networking Reception at CES 2017, contact automotive@access-company.com.

About the author:

Neale Foster

Neale brings a wealth of broadcast, connected TV and consumer electronics industry experience to his role of spearheading ACCESS in Internet Connected Devices. ACCESS is one of the world’s leading software providers for connected mobile, Digital TV, set-top boxes and other electronic consumer devices. Neale ensures that ACCESS develops software solutions that enable broadcasters, operators and consumer electronics manufacturers to connect the broadcast world with the consumer electronic world to successfully launch new business models and consumer services. Follow him on Twitter / Linkedin

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