ONE Media 3.0, the wholly-owned subsidiary of Sinclair Broadcast Group, today announced it has entered into an agreement with chip maker Saankhya Labs to develop ATSC 3.0 chipsets to power consumer devices capable of receiving next-gen TV.
Saankhya Labs, located in the “Silicon Valley” region of India, specializes in Cognitive Software Defined Radio chipsets, said Mark Aitken, Sinclair VP for Advanced Technology during a telephone interview this afternoon.
“A Cognitive Software Defined Radio chipset can on the fly become a receiver for any of the world’s standards,” he said. “We view this as an opportunity to be a bridging technology chip to allow countries in transformation [of their OTA TV standards] to utilize that chipset.”
The deal calls for the chip maker to develop a 28 nanometer (nm) chipset designed to receive ATSC 3.0 signals as well as ATSC 1 and all of the DVB standards, including those for television and satellite, Aitken said.
ONE Media 3.0 is aiming the chipset at applications where ATSC 3.0 will be received on the go.
“This chipset is being designed with mobile first. The chipsets being manufactured by LG, Samsung and soon by others are designed to operate in environments where power is plentiful,” he said. “Set-top boxes aren’t power-constrained, but mobile devices are.”
Thus, the new chipset will rely on the 28 nm design, which is far less power-hungry, than the 40 nm integrated circuits commonly used in many electronics. The new chipset is envisioned for a variety of devices, including cell phones, tablets, dongles, gateways and cars, as well as TVs, said ONE Media 3.0 in announcing the deal.
Under the agreement, the first step is to set up an incubator for development of the chipset with the goal of full-fledged development. During the incubation phase Saankhya Labs will define chip architecture and identify algorithms together with Sinclair and ONE Media 3.0.
The incubation phase should last about two to three months. The chipset will be bought to market within the next 12 months, he said.
However, before production begins, ONE Media 3.0 intends to approach mobile device makers to ensure that what is being produced meets their needs.
“Chipset development is not the normal work of broadcasters,” said Aitken. “We want to do this right to create a chipset with the broadest appeal before we commit to the millions and millions of dollars to ramp up with the full manpower to bring it to market.”