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1394TA and HANA to offer "1394 over coax via UWB" home networking

Darren Murph

Although coax isn't the freshest medium on the block, there's still a good bit of potential yet to be realized in your household cable wiring. The 1394 Trade Association has teamed up with the High Definition Audio-Video Network Alliance (aka HANA) in hopes of networking the electronics in your crib by tapping into the copious amount of cable you've probably already got installed. While turning all of your home entertainment devices into one big happy family has been a long-standing fantasy, these two organizations are hoping to bring the ideas to complete fruition via ultrawideband technology (UWB). Plans are to leverage the bandwidth in your home's coaxial cable to network HDTVs, PVRs, set-top boxes, HTPCs, NAS drives, DVD players, and whatever else you can throw in the mix by using hardware and software developed by PulseLink (which we've already seen in action), Freescale Semiconductor, and Samsung Electronics. The technology will reportedly play nice with your legacy programming, meet the current FCC mandates, and even support IP. As expected, 1394 over coax via UWB will support DRM, so even though content guardians of the world can rest easy, we could potentially endure a bit of headache in the "seamless networking" that we're led to expect. This promising application will supposedly feature "real-time QoS [quality of service]" and raw data rates "exceeding 1Gbps," which combined with its long list of attributes, sounds like a match made in heaven for those looking to network their currently disconnected entertainment devices. But until we see hard pricing and implementations beyond a trade show setup (i.e. some industry support), we'll continue to keep our fingers patiently crossed, and our coax patiently un-networked.

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