DVI and HDMI – A Tale of Two Digital Interfaces

In-Stat has an interesting report on Digital Visual Interface (DVI) and High Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI). DVI and HDMI are both high-bandwidth digital interface specifications aimed at transmitting uncompressed video. DVI is aimed primarily at PCs and PC peripherals, while HDMI is aimed at the consumer electronics (CE) market. According to In-Stat, both interfaces saw record numbers of products ship in 2005, and 2006 numbers should be even higher. However, in 2007, the two standards are headed in different directions.

DVI was developed in the late 1990s to connect PCs to monitors. However, after developing the DVI 1.0 standard, the Digital Display Working Group disbanded, leaving no roadmap to improve the standard or increase data rates. The recently announced DisplayPort standard offers a higher data rate than DVI, and has strong backing from PC vendors. Designed as a replacement for both DVI and analog VGA connectors, DisplayPort-enabled PCs and monitors should begin shipping in 2007. This will lead to a decline in DVI-enabled product shipments after 2006.

HDMI, on the other hand, has parlayed its success in digital televsions (DTV) to devices that connect to DTVs, including set top boxes, DVD players and recorders, and game consoles. HDMI appeared for the first time in digital camcorders and digital still cameras in 2006. HDMI is also found in a small number of higher-end mediacentric desktop and notebook PCs. Overall shipment growth of HDMI-enabled devices will be in excess of 75% annually between 2005 and 2010.

Currently, there are three companies that claim the ability to transmit HDMI signals wirelessly via ultrawideband (UWB), two of which are scheduled to release products in 2007. In-Stat expects wireless HDMI will have a bigger impact over the next two to four years. In addition, a new standards effort was announced in early November 2006, called WirelessHD. Backed by several major CE vendors, the group is promising bandwidths that will dwarf UWB.

You can read In-Stat’s 42-page report for only $852,479.95. Tell them EDA Blog sent you and you can get the report for only $3,495. The title of their report is DVI & HDMI 2006: DisplayPort Will Succeed DVI, Smooth Sailing for HDMI.

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