WPCE - Pioneer planning network AV server for US market

Engineers at Pioneer in Japan are working on a client/server system that allows digital audio, video and Internet content to be accessed through televisions in the home and are hoping to launch it in the North American market in the second quarter of 2003.

At the center of the system, which is intended to connect to the same Ethernet network that is already present in many homes linking broadband modems to personal computers, is the DL-1000 server. The unit has an 80G-byte hard disk drive on which music, video and images will be stored, said a Pioneer representative at World PC Expo, where the system was on display on Wednesday.

The server connects to a television set through which the content can be viewed and also uses the network to access streaming content from the Internet, through a custom version of Yahoo Inc.'s Launch multimedia service.

Should a user want to access content through other television sets in the home, Pioneer is also preparing network clients. The DL-500AV units connect to the server unit and pull content across the network for display. With such a set-up, it is possible to watch different content from the server or Internet on different televisions in the home.

Because the units are connected to an Ethernet network, it will also be possible to access content by using computers on the network, but users won't be able to copy content to computer hard disk drives because of copyright controls being built into the machines. Users will be able to send content from computers to the server.

The server is based on a Geode processor running at 266MHz from National Semiconductor Corp. and runs the Linux operating system.

The system will support Windows Media 8 encoded content in addition to MPEG2 and MPEG4 video, said a Pioneer representative. By early 2004, the company is planning to support Windows Media 9.

Beyond North America, there are no plans to put the system on sale at present, said a Pioneer representative at World PC Expo. "In Japan, there is not enough broadband content and in other countries Ethernet in the home is not as common as it is in North America."

With commercialization still around six months away, pricing details have not been decided however the representative said Pioneer hopes to be able to sell the server for under US$1,000 and the client units for between $500 and $600.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Martyn Williams

PC World
Show Comments


James Cook University - Master of Data Science Online Course

Learn more >


Victorinox Werks Professional Executive 17 Laptop Case

Learn more >



Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?