Cable & CE Industry Cooperation On Unidirectional Digital Cable Receivers (2003)

By Brian Markwalter, David Broberg, Consumer Electronics Association, Cable Television Laboratories

As consumer electronics companies and the cable industry continue to work together to accelerate the deployment of high definition digital television (HDTV), they have created a memorandum of understanding (MOU) that defines how cable systems will deliver services and essential elements needed for unidirectional digital cable-ready receivers to receive such services. The MOU relies on Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers (SCTE) and Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) standards to provide the framework for interoperability. This paper describes the December 2002 MOU and focuses on the standards referenced therein that define requirements for cable systems and receivers. This paper provides an overview of the agreement as a foundation for providing a more detailed looked at the self-certification program it requires. The paper describes the categories of tests prescribed by the agreement including Critical Tests, Noncritical Tests, and Network Harm Tests. Taken together, these test make up the Test Suite, jointly developed by CEA and CableLabs. The Test Suite is derived from existing work by CableLabs as part of the OpenCable project. This paper describes in greater detail the foregoing testing methodology and the expected benefits to the industry.

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