Sigma Designs' latest reference design for the first UHD self-install set-top box is a wall-outlet mounted concept — about the size of a remote control — that supports the latest in video technology, including 4k and HDR.

The goal of the platform is to significantly reduce an operators cost on a multi-room video service install. The wall-mounted approach in a small form factor allows an installation as close as possible to a televisions own power connection at the wall. Once plugged into a power receptacle the only other connection is that of HDMI to the television. The set-top box connects to broadband via a G.Hn power line network using a home’s power infrastructure set up via a gateway and a G.Hn module. Additionally, each platform has a Z-Wave IOT controller that help build out a Z-Wave mesh network to control Z-Wave devices throughout the home.

The set-top box reference designs utilise Sigma Design’s SMP8758 or the SMP8980 media processor, which is designed to decode HEVC’s Main-10 profile, VP-9, HDR supporting the content industry’s move to lower bit rate video at resolutions up to 4K. The strong combination of CPU, GPU and SDK allows for a powerful middleware framework deployment for OTT and IPTV streaming services.

Currently, the platform can be set up with Linux or Android operating systems and run several OTT applications like Netflix, YouTube and Hulu and some operator developed applications for VOD/SVOD and catch up TV.