DLNA takes baby steps

More and more consumer electronics come equipped with DLNA (Digital Living Network Alliance) certification, but few consumers know what that means.

The Digital Living Network Alliance (DLNA) let users view and listen to content stored on any device

The Digital Living Network Alliance (DLNA) let users view and listen to content stored on any device

More and more consumer electronics products come equipped with DLNA (Digital Living Network Alliance) certification -- at the IFA electronics show new TV's, home theater systems, and computers all come with the DLNA stamp.

The promise of DLNA is to let users view and listen to content (including music, photos and movies) stored on any certified device on any certified product. If you have a Blu-ray player in the living room, you will be able to watch a movie in the bedroom and so on, and do it without having to deal with the hassle of configuring it all. But we aren't there yet.

Sony's upcoming TV lineup includes models that have been DLNA certified, for example the W4500, letting users view JPEG photos and listen to MP3 music stored on, for example, a Vaio laptop. Sony demonstrated that set up at IFA.

"Still it's kind of a primitive version of DLNA," said Hiroshi Sakamoto, vice president of TV marketing at Sony Europe.

Sony doesn't have support for video streaming, which will come in 2009, according to Sakamoto. Another missing piece of the puzzle is built-in support for wireless networking in TVs. Today, wired Ethernet is the name of the game. Users can add an adapter to get wireless access, but it's only a question of time before Wi-Fi shows up in TV's.

"We are discussing that, I can't make a clear comment," said Sakamoto. Why it hasn't happened yet comes down to both cost and quality, according to Sakamoto.

Getting all of the pieces together doesn't guarantee that anyone will use DLNA systems. Few consumers know what DLNA is and what it can and can't do, and the industry still has a lot of work to do when it comes to convincing users of the benefits. When Sony's DLNA TVs show up in shops the company will also add promotional material on its Web page, which at this stage is a better advertising method than, for example, large campaigns, according to Sakamoto.

DLNA won't connect the mass market anytime soon, Christmas 2009 at the earliest, according to Sakamoto.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Mikael Ricknäs

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?