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DLNA 2.0

IDEA


DLNA and its development - can be the best cross-devices interface for systems like Smart House and other content transformation and redirection applications. At present time it seems to be most corresponding technology for customer electronics.

There is alternatives like Bluetooth, ZigBee and Wireless USB 3.0, but these technologies are not so well advertised for consumer electronics and originally more PC related.


What I will try to state in this article is possible development of DLNA in direction of applications and higher levels of OSI. This can be called DLNA 2.0 with a meaning of Digital Living Network for Applications. Finally, the exact physical level can be changed to already mentioned above Bluetooth, ZigBee or Wireless USB. In fact, if DLNA 2.0 will be a high level protocol of aggregation and content management, then it can run even on competitive technologies like OSGI or UPnP.



Ultimate release is when DLNA 2.0 is just medium and application level layers in OSI, while exact base wireless technology can be determined to fit exact device capabilities.

CONCEPT


There is a multimedia server which coordinates content coordination and redirection. The content itself may be transferred directly to devices or via this server. With first option we can have quite weak and cheap server (may be even based on some Intel 80486 processor), but second variant brings in more convenience in operations routines and devices development. In fact, this second variant is even more cost effective, because otherwise each device has to contain some server and high speed connection inside.


Then, before examine examples, let's introduce one more technical options. Whatever device is presented with DLNA 2.0, it should have a formalized database of generic features. See table below. Table can be enhanced later, but have to be finalized before commercial launch!


Feature name

Feature code (8 bit)

Feature value

(1 or 8 or 16bit)

Examples (values in relation to content server)

HDTV set

Mobile Phone

Universal Remote Control

Wireless Headphones

E-Book

Display availability 001 0 or 1 1 1 1 0 1
Display width 002 1 to 65536 1920 320 176 n/a 640
Display height 003 1 to 65536 1080 240 128 n/a 400
Display Colors (bits) 004 1 to 256 24 16 10 n/a 1
Display Frame rate 005 1 to 256 100 15 10 n/a 1
Sound availability 006 0 or 1 1 1 0 1 0
Sound depth (bits) 007 1 to 256 24 16 n/a 16 n/a
Sound channels qty 008 1 to 256 6 2 n/a 2 n/a
Control availability 009 0 or 1 1 1 1 0 1
Simple control (Y/N) 010 0 or 1 1 1 1 n/a 1
Cursor control (Up/Down /Left/Right) 011 0 or 1 1 1 1 n/a 1
Digits input (0 to 9) 012 0 or 1 1 1 1 n/a 0
QWERTY input 013 0 or 1 0 1 0 n/a 0
Special in-content control input - channels qty 014 1 to 65536 20 50 25 n/a 2
Special applications 015 0 or 1 0 1 1 0 0
Vibration 016 0 or 1 n/a 1 0 n/a n/a
Flashlight 017 0 or 1 n/a 1 1 n/a n/a
Special in-content application 018 0 or 1 n/a 1 0 n/a n/a
CPU availability 019 0 or 1 0 1 1 0 1
CPU perfomance index 020 1 to 65536 n/a 40 20 n/a 30
GPU availability 021 0 or 1 0 1 0 0 1
GPU perfomance index 022 1 to 65536 n/a 40 n/a n/a 2



 

So, now we can go to examination of some examples. There are possible variants of implementation. Main target now is to show technology usability.

HDTV to everywhere


Pre-Condition(s): There is powerful Media Server implemented (within Smart House) and HDTV signal is receiving by this Server.


User watching important TV program and have to go out outside the door, to get some order from delivery service. Very important commercial news and user can't miss any detail even if away just for 5 minutes. Then he/she choose to redirect a program to mobile phone. Server estimates that mobile phone has resolution of 320x240 with 16 color and 16 bit stereo sound. If it a source of interactive IPTV, then Server determining also that there is full set of control including content's control. Meantime there is final checking that CPU is enough for local management of processes with stated video and sound parameters and that GPU is enough to perform decoding from MPEG4 signal. If it's all ok, then Server recalculates TV signal (content) to new characteristics (which are more weak than HDTV source) and transferring signal to selected mobile phone via DLNA 2.0.


Another example - there is some song contests on TV. Not so important to watch, but good to listen. Then redirecting to Wireless Headphone (with DLNA 2.0). Server determines that there is no picture, no control and just stereo sound.


One more example - there is some sport competition with slow changes. For example pool championship. User wants to sit on terrace and have a sunbath. So, he decided to redirect TV content to e-book. There will be no sound, just 1 frame per second and black & white picture. Yet, still possible to see a general actions and count on a screen. Good mix of be informed in sport user likes and having rest on a nature's loan.


Finally, there can be some smart Universal Remote Control (URC), where we can assign that each channel is not just a number, but picture of current translation which is renewing 1-2 times per second. Then we can make a quick look of interesting channels or avoid switching to TV advertisement.


Notice: There can be then more specific cases. For example, interactive advertisement or voting system can be transferred to mobile phone or URC, while the picture and sound remain on HDTV set. Or TeleText system is redirecting to e-book. Or some subscription on TV programs list is redirecting from PC to URC.


E-book for the entire house


Another situation is when we want to continue read some book from e-book device, after returning home. Quite logical, that we can redirect it content to TV set and redirect control to URC. Then our Media Server have to synchronize content (if it's downloaded via Server) or download Content from e-book device. Another job of Media Server is to justify text presentation for another parameters of HDTV set (can be showed 2-3 times more at once, than on e-book device), and assign new control on URC.


There is another situation possible, e-book battery has become low and user wants to continue read the book. Yet, it's not so convenient to hold e-book device with power cable. Therefore user redirecting the book to his mobile phone.


In fact, if our Media Server is quite clever and/or have some additional application for voice-text conversion, then we even can redirect a plain text from e-book device to Wireless Headphone. This case is demonstrating not just content redirection, but obvious value added service.


Text is the text


Then we have some more options with text content. For example, some user came home and waiting for several reports by SMS. He/she put his mobile phone to charger and have made a redirection of SMS to his e-book. Can check this, but can't reply. Optionally there is possible to have Voice Recognition application in Media Server, then we can reply to SMSes by voice.


Another option is that user listening music and SMS content redirected to his wireless headphone. Then Media Server have to manage pause in music and convert text to voice. The same voice reply to SMS can be implemented.


MARKETING


How to make money on it? How operators can make money? I think that I have answers to both questions.


Regarding a Smart House components - it's a pure business of consumer electronics producers. It's the second wind in selling the same old good stuff, but with new stickers like "Full DLNA 2.0" or "DLNA 2.0 ready". I think, that with this side of the business no one has problems.


What operators can gain on all these features under DLNA 2.0? Let see several examples, which multiplied by client base giving us millions just from nothing.

  • User laying on a sofa and decided to look some YouTube clips. Convenient to watch it on TV, but lazy to go to PC and make redirection, so he accessing YouTube from mobile Phone which is costly HSPA traffic. Similar case - user's friend have sent a link on some exact clip, have sent over SMS and it's much easier for user to get access from mobile phone.
  • When replying from home over Voice Recognition System, then user no so care about length of SMS. Then operator has bigger SMSes (300-500 symbols), than created by manual lazy input of 160 symbols.
  • If there is some on-line content dedicated for mobile phones, for example, then operator has more consumption of it, as watching it on HDTV and controlling over URC is more convenient, than on small phone.
  • Some VPN integration on Media Server at home and Mobile Phone (or e-book device) will lead to increase of traffic just for the content which user already downloaded once on his PC at home. So, same content generating 2-3 times more traffic!

 



What then to do with marketing? Prescription can be the following:

  • Advertise whole concept in special glance (but technical) magazines. There even possible to show some real cases that users can save money, by redirecting the content from Home broadband to mobile device.
  • Advertize life cases and style of life in luxury glance magazines.
  • Product placement will be one of the best decision. Especially if movie will be about some future's fantasy or about secret agents.
  • Last but not least option - is stating that you already have 90% of Smart House components (thanks to customer electronics producers with their will of selling old things with new stickers), and that with small charge on Smart House network integration thei have incredible opportunities in home security, child care, comfort living and so on.

 


RESUME


This case is quite complex one. The thing to think is even not deep technology details, but to manage this DLNA 2.0 development and lead.


All this ideas are existing already in one or another representation. There are some ready products of integrating Smart House solutions and different telecom technologies for remote control. There I sure some pure IT options of recalculation of video content from old style phones with 176x128 screens up to Full HD, which are used for IPTV.


What is not exists now is some integration program, which brings all the things together and brings under World-Wide Standard. Whoever will start this activity first, can gain a lot on patents, at least or gain on being a leader in such components production.



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