The HDBaseT Alliance has launched the HomePlay feature set, as part of the new HDBaseT 2.0 specification. Based on HDBaseT’s 5Play capabilities (video, audio, Ethernet, power and controls), HomePlay promises to make it simpler and more cost-effective for consumers to turn their entire homes into multimedia entertainment centres.
“Over the last three years, HDBaseT has become the digital connectivity standard for professional AV installations, and we have leveraged our experience working with the pros to ensure that HDBaseT 2.0 will enable consumers to enjoy the same benefits and user experience: highest video quality, reliability and multi-room support all over a single inexpensive cable,” said Micha Risling, marketing chair of the HDBaseT Alliance. “HomePlay, as defined in the new HDBaseT 2.0 specification, features an elegant, affordable plug-and-play solution that will allow the average consumer to experience the same multimedia benefits of HDBaseT that the professionals have become accustomed to.”
HDBaseT 1.0 only addresses the physical and data link layers, and defines a point-to-point connectivity standard. HDBaseT 2.0 adds networking, switching and control point capabilities as well as defining point-to-multipoint connectivity, providing multi-stream support.
The 2.0 spec also adds inherent support for USB 2.0 and other native interfaces, so that manufacturers do not need to include the multiple interfaces and conversion components required by HDBaseT 1.0 products. This, according to the Alliance, means that HDBaseT 2.0 switches will be smaller, simpler to implement and cheaper to produce – making the technology more affordable for consumers.
"The key to making HDBaseT more cost effective for consumers and professionals is making the HDBaseT-enabled components more affordable, and the new features HDBaseT 2.0 offers will help manufacturers do just that," added Risling.
Eyran Lyda, HDBaseT Technical Committee chairperson, commented: “The HDBaseT 2.0 specification defines the required adaptations across all seven layers of the Open System Interconnection (OSI) model to support time-sensitive, high-throughput video/audio and other time sensitive applications The HomePlay switch is designed to provide all required services for the multimedia home, such as delivering time sensitive high throughput video, including 4K, audio and USB to all the rooms in the house.”