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Tuesday, April 25, 2006
Sigma's New Chipset to Be Featured in Next-Generation Set-Top Box

Sigma Designs announced its advanced SMP8634 Chipset will power set-top boxes providing support for video decoding of H.264 (MPEG-4 part 10), VC-1, MMV 9, MPEG-2 and MPEG-4 (part 2) formats.

Currently, USDTV is transitioning its network to an advanced video compression technology, MPEG-4 AVC. USDTV's next-generation STB will have integrated MPEG-4 AVC technology in order to provide enhanced services for its customers. Some of these industry-leading features include all the latest codecs, high-definition video and set-top box processing power through the use of Sigma's powerful SMP8634.

USDTV will demonstrate the first live MPEG-4 AVC broadcast over its digital terrestrial network at the National Association of Broadcasters Convention (NAB 2006) in Las Vegas, NV, April 24-27, at the ATSC DTV Hot Spot in the South Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center.

"The new USDTV receiver will provide consumers with enhanced video features including advanced digital reception, PVR functionality and VOD services," said Richard Johnson, Chief Operation Officer, USDTV. "We are pleased with the state-of-the-art HDTV output and advanced features that Sigma Design's SMP8634 'System-on-a-chip' media processor will add to our next generation set-top box."

USDTV recently announced the details of its second-generation set-top box that will begin shipping to new customers in two phases starting in the fall of 2006. The last phase will ship in the first quarter of 2007 and incorporate a 250-gigabyte hard drive, which will support a variety of storage based and in-home networking services.

The USDTV STB incorporates a high-definition (HD) TV receiver and allows viewers to receive all the digital and HD programs sent out by local stations and national broadcast networks. Also, consumers with home-theater systems can take advantage of full-digital surround sound.

"USDTV has created a unique media hub for the home and we are pleased they have selected our chip as the core processor for its next generation set-top box," said Ken Lowe, VP of strategic marketing, Sigma Designs. "Our strength in the industry continues to grow, and working with companies like USDTV enables consumers to receive the best entertainment quality in their homes."

About the SMP8634

Sigma's SMP8634 media processor provides a complete system-on-chip (SOC) solution with powerful multimedia processing, robust content security system, and a full complement of peripherals. Its advanced decoder engines support video decoding of H.264 (MPEG-4 part 10), VC-1 as well as Windows Media(R) Video 9, MPEG-2 and MPEG-4 (part 2) with multiple streams, up to the equivalent of two high-definition video streams. High-performance graphics acceleration, multi-standard audio decoding, advanced display processing capabilities, and HDMI/HDCP output round out its multimedia core. Powerful content security is ensured through a dedicated secure processor, flash memory, and a range of digital rights management (DRM) engines for high-speed payload decryption. The SMP8634's 300-Mhz host CPU, 3.2 GB/second unified memory controller, Ethernet 10/100 controller, dual USB 2.0 controller, and IDE controller provide for a single-chip solution for most set-top boxes and consumer players.

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