Electronics giants to create wireless standard

Sony, Samsung and other consumer electronics heavyweights are uniting to support a technology that could send high-definition video signals wirelessly from a single set-top box to screens around the home.

The announcemen is an important development in the race to create a definitive way to replace tangles of video cables, but doesn't end it _ both Sony and Samsung also are supporting a competing technology, an Associated Press report also said.

In the new consortium, Sony and Samsung Electronics, along with Motorola, Sharp and Hitachi, will develop an industry standard around technology from Amimon of Israel called WHDI, for Wireless Home Digital Interface.

'If you have a TV in the home, that TV will be able to access any source in the home, whether it's a set-top box in the living room, or the PlayStation in the bedroom, or a DVD player in another bedroom. That's the message of WHDI,' Noam Geri, co-founder of Amimon, was quoted by the Associated Press report as saying.

Amimon is already selling chips that fulfill part of that promise, but the creation of a broad industry group makes it more likely that consumers will be able to buy WHDI-enabled devices from different manufacturers and have them all work together.

Geri expects TVs with Amimon's chips to reach stores next year, costing about €63.7 (US$100) more than equivalent, non-wireless TVs.

Wireless streaming of high-definition video is a relatively tricky engineering problem that many companies are trying to tackle. It can be done with the fastest versions of Wi-Fi, a technology already in many homes, but that requires 'compression,' or reduction of the data rate, with picture quality degrading as a result. There's also a delay in transmission as chips on both ends of the link work to compress, then decompress the image.