Consumers Can Stream HD Content from USB Drives, Network Drives and Popular Internet Sites to Their Big Screen TVs

WD® introduced the WD TV Live HD media player featuring network capability and Full-HD 1080p resolution. The new WD TV Live HD media player makes it easy for anyone to play HD (high definition) videos stored on USB and network drives, as well as Internet content from popular Web sites, on the biggest screen in their home — their HD television. Building on the success of the WD TV HD media player, the WD TV Live HD media player offers a new, more responsive interface to help consumers enjoy a world of digital content in their living room, without a computer.

WESTERN DIGITAL TECHNOLOGIES WD TV(TM)

The network capability of the WD TV Live media player enables users to stream or transfer movies from PC or Mac® computers or a network-attached storage device such as WD’s My Book® World Edition(TM) and WD ShareSpace network drives to their HD TVs. The WD TV Live media player also allows users to stream rich content from YouTube(TM), Flickr® and Pandora®. The HD onscreen menu brings together all of the users’ available media in an elegant and simple-to-navigate interface.

Consumers are amassing large libraries of digital videos, photos and music on their computers. According to research firm Parks Associates, the average consumer had 123 GB of videos, photos, and music in 2009 which will grow to 1.3 TB by 2013 (Digital Lifestyles: 2009 Outlook). In addition, an increasing number of consumers are looking for seamless access to their personal media, as well as to Internet media. According to Parks Associates, the sales of connected consumer electronics devices, such as connected TVs and digital media adapters, is expected to more than double from 57 million units in 2009 to 115 million units in 2013 (Home Networks for Consumer Electronics 2009).

Consumers are investing millions of dollars in HD TVs, with HD televisions representing more than 50 percent of TVs sold in the U.S., according to Parks Associates (Home Networks for Consumer Electronics 2009). But consumers’ digital content is often relegated to the relatively small screen on their PC or Mac computers. The WD TV Live HD media player is the newest member in the family of WD TV media players by WD, which make moving digital content from a computer to playing it on a big screen TV simply plug-and-play.

Like the popular first-generation WD TV HD media player introduced last fall, the WD TV Live media player connects directly to a users’ HD TV and plays almost any file stored on a connected USB drive such as My Passport(TM) portable drive. The WD TV Live media player features powerful media processing, which enables playback in Full-HD 1080p resolution. WD TV Live media player also will play movies and photos stored on other popular USB devices such as digital camcorders and digital cameras.

“The media enthusiast community has embraced the first WD TV HD media player and given us tremendous feedback,” said Dale Pistilli, vice president of marketing for WD’s branded products group. “With the new WD TV Live media player we’re giving them what they asked for — network connectivity and Internet-content streaming capabilities — and offering them a simple way to enjoy all of their digital media and enjoy it on their HD TVs.”

WD TV Live HD Media Player
Features of the WD TV Live HD Media Player include:
— Full-HD 1080p video playback and navigation with the included remote control and crisp, animated navigation menus;
— Play a wide variety of file formats including support for a wide variety of the most popular file formats with no need to spend time transcoding;
— Play videos, music and photos from the Internet on your big screen TV and discover new music with Pandora Internet radio or listen to thousands of radio stations via Live365 Internet radio;
— Ethernet port for wired or WiFi connection(1) to access files anywhere on the network to play movies, music, and photos from any PC or drive on a home network;
— Turns a USB drive(2) into an HD media player and plays content from most popular USB drives, and digital cameras, camcorders, and portable media players that can be recognized as mass storage devices;
— Unlimited media collection, just add more USB drives for more space;
— Two USB ports for seamless media playback from multiple USB drives and ability to access them simultaneously while a media library feature collects the content on all the drives into one list sorted by media type;
— Transfer files by copying, moving or deleting files stored on a USB drive, a network drive, camcorder, or a camera to the attached USB drive using the on-screen menus;
— Picture Transfer Protocol support to show photos and movies directly from digital camera or video camera and or any digital imaging device that supports Picture Transfer Protocol;
— Advanced navigation options including thumbnail and list views, media library and search;
— Photo viewing to create custom slide shows, zoom and pan and search;
— Movie viewing with fast-forward, rewind, pause, zoom and pan, view subtitles, and search;
— Music playback with fast-forward, rewind, pause, shuffle, repeat and search;
— File copying between USB devices;
— HDMI® 1.3 port, composite video and component video output(3) for the highest quality HDTV or home theater;
— SPDIF digital output that sends digital signals to your AV receiver for the best surround sound experience; and,
— Ultra-compact design to fit easily into a home entertainment center.

Pricing and Availability

The WD TV Live Media Player is available now at select retailers and online at shopwd.com. Covered by a 1-year limited warranty, the MSRP for WD TV Live Media Player is $149.99 USD.

(1) WiFi adapter sold separately.

(2) WD TV media players are optimized for use with My Passport portable hard drives.

(3) Additional composite (RCA), and component outputs ensure compatibility with most television sets.

Source: Western Digital Technologies


Tiny single-input, single-cell Li-Ion chargers simplify charging in portable designs

Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) introduced two families of 800-mA USB battery chargers with automatic USB detection for single-cell, lithium-ion (Li-Ion) battery-powered electronics. The bq2404x and bq2405x battery charger integrated circuits have a high input-voltage range of up to 30 V, and 6.6-V overvoltage protection to support handheld devices, from entry-level feature phones to smartphones, and other low-power handheld devices, that may use low-cost adapters. See: www.ti.com/bq2404x-pr, www.ti.com/bq2405x-pr.

The bq2405x’s automatic USB detection feature can intelligently detect if a power source is a dedicated power adapter or USB port. This allows a system to start immediate fast charging if a USB transceiver is unavailable due to a discharged battery.

Key features of the bq2404x and bq2405x battery chargers:
— Charging accuracy: one percent charge voltage and 10 percent current accuracy using single-output channel
— USB compliance: USB current limiting and input voltage dynamic power management
— System safety: complies with JEITA guidelines; 30-V input rating and overvoltage protection and includes a 10-hour safety timer
— System flexibility: bq2405x has automatic input source detection of USB port or a dedicated power adapter

Availability and pricing

TI’s bq24040, bq24041, bq24050, bq24052 and bq24055 are available in volume now from TI and its authorized distributors. The devices come in two small package options: a 10-pin, 2 mm x 2 mm, or 12-pin, 2 mm x 3 mm SON package. Suggested resale pricing is $1.15 to $1.45 in 1,000-unit quantities. Samples, evaluation modules and application notes on TI’s battery chargers are available.

New battery charger selection tool helps speed selection process

TI provides a broad range of battery charger ICs that support single-cell and multi-cell battery packs used in handheld, portable medical and portable industrial equipment. Designers can select recommended products using TI’s new Battery charger selector tool, where one can choose criteria based on battery chemistry, number of cells, topology needed and battery voltage levels.

Source: Texas Instruments Incorporated


Creative Professionals Now Have a Better Way to Tell Their Drives Apart

WD® introduced its new high-performance My Book® Studio(TM) desktop external drives with a customizable e-label that is always visible, even when unplugged, so it’s easy to know the contents of the drive. Designed for Mac® users and creative professionals, the new My Book Studio drives are equipped with a FireWire® 800 interface to give users the speed they need for demanding tasks like photo and video editing and graphic design.

WESTERN DIGITAL TECHNOLOGIES MY BOOK(R) STUDIO

The new My Book Studio drives are TimeMachine® compatible, offer automatic, continuous backup with WD SmartWare(TM) software, and include 256-bit hardware-based encryption to provide a high level of security. Available now at select retailers and the WD online store (shopwd.com), the new My Book Studio drives are formatted for Mac and offered in capacities of 500 GB, 1 TB, 1.5 TB and 2 TB.

Creative professionals generate, store and back up massive amounts of digital content. During in-home and in-studio interviews with consumers, WD team members observed that many were taping notes or other hand-made labels on their many drives to tell them apart. For these customers, WD developed the e-label high-contrast smart display which reads like ink on paper, and lets the user create a customized label to describe the drive’s contents.

Utilizing e-paper technology similar to that found on the Amazon Kindle(TM), the information on the display remains clearly visible even when the drive is unplugged, and can be changed easily and as often as desired. The e-label also shows available storage capacity and drive security status.

“Storing and backing up is a huge part of my workflow as a professional photographer,” said Bruce Dorn. “I have been using WD hard drives for quite a while now and my experience has been exceptional with reliability and ease-of-use, and I love the design. The new e-label smart display will help me organize my projects while password protection and encryption will keep it more secure. The new drives deliver backup not only for professionals, but for anyone who is taking pictures, collecting music or who needs to back up their digital life.”

My Book Studio drives also feature user-selected password protection combined with 256-bit hardware-based encryption, which scrambles files before they are stored. Typically found only on much more expensive drive systems, the encryption acts as a virtual padlock to keep users’ data safe.

The new My Book Studio drives come equipped with WD SmartWare software, an integrated application which provides automatic and continuous backup, as well as control of the e-label display, password and other settings. When the My Book Studio drive is plugged in for the first time, the simple and intuitive first backup process launches automatically. The real-time visual interface of WD SmartWare software gives users a reassuring view of their backup as it happens. After the first backup, users’ files are backed up automatically every time they change or add a file.

WD SmartWare software is compatible with the Apple® TimeMachine. Users with older versions of Mac OS (not equipped with TimeMachine) or those who wish to use the drive for both backup and extra storage have the option to use WD SmartWare software backup capability.

“Photographers, videographers and other Mac computer enthusiasts require fast performance for their complex projects,” said Dale Pistilli, vice president of marketing for WD’s branded products group. “They also have a very large number of projects and files which they need to keep organized across multiple hard drives. With a FireWire 800 interface and customizable e-label, the new My Book Studio drives offer an elegant, high-speed solution for these creative professionals to interact with, organize and securely archive their media.”

Price and Availability

The new My Book Studio drives are offered in capacities of 500 GB, 1 TB, 1.5 TB and 2 TB and have a 3-year limited warranty. My Book Studio drives are available now at select retailers and online at shopwd.com. MSRP ranges from $149.99 to $299.99 USD depending on model.

My Book Studio
The new WD My Book Studio drives feature:

— Smart display with a customizable e-label that reminds users of what is stored on the drive, available capacity and security status at-a-glance, even when the drive is unplugged;
— High-performance FireWire 800 interface to access data at top speeds and USB 2.0 interface;
— Plug-and-play ready for Mac users and compatible with Apple TimeMachine;
— WD SmartWare software that visually presents consumers’ data in a software control center, providing them peace of mind that their precious photos, videos and files are securely protected;
— 256-bit hardware-based encryption and password protection for peace of mind knowing that data is protected from unauthorized access;
— Smaller, sleeker, more streamlined design and elegant book-like shape that takes up minimal space and allows two or more My Book drives to nestle together neatly like volumes on a shelf;
— WD GreenPower Technology(TM) lowers internal drive power consumption by up to 30 percent, a sleep mode reduces power during idle times, and a power-saving feature turns the drive on and off with your computer;
— Planet-friendly packaging derived from recycled materials to minimize waste;
— HFS + Journaled(1) formatting and are compatible with Mac OS X Tiger®, Leopard® and Snow Leopard(TM);
— 3-year limited warranty.

WD SmartWare Software
WD SmartWare software features:

— Visual backup displays that show content in categories and shows the progress of backup;
— Automatic, continuous data backup will instantly make a second copy whenever you add or change a file;
— Retrieve valuable data to its original location whether it’s lost data or the file has been overwritten; and,
— Customizable data backup that allows users to set drive security, run diagnostics, manage the power settings, and more from the WD SmartWare control center.

(1) My Book Studio drives can be reformatted NTFS to work with Windows® Vista and Windows 7.

Source: Western Digital Technologies


a Powerful Open Source Linux Platform for Developers and Enthusiasts with New Partner Applications

NETGEAR Also Announces Development Partner Program for Embedded Software Application Developers to Create Custom Applications

NETGEAR®, Inc. announced the launch of RangeMax(TM) Wireless-N Gigabit Router with USB (WNR3500L), a full-featured Wireless-N router offering high-performance wireless range and speed along with Gigabit Ethernet ports and ReadyShare(TM) USB storage access.

The RangeMax Wireless-N Gigabit Router with USB is also designed to serve as a reliable, high-performance open source Linux® platform supporting a wide variety of applications created by multiple development partners and the dedicated open source community. Some of these partners include BigFoot Networks for boosting network speeds for online gaming, Leaf Networks for easy remote access, Paragon Software for high-speed USB file reads and writes, and Sputnik for hotspot solutions.

The most popular free, open source Linux-based firmware — DD-WRT, OpenWRT and Tomato — are also available on the RangeMax Wireless-N Gigabit Router, making it easier for users to develop a wide variety of applications. Customers can download the Linux-based open source firmware from the open source community and development program website at http://www.myopenrouter.com/.

“The debut of our open source RangeMax Wireless-N Gigabit Router is significant as it is the first full-featured Wireless-N Linux router to combine wide ranging capabilities, features, infrastructure and a community to enable application development,” stated Som Pal Choudhury, senior product line manager for advanced wireless at NETGEAR. “Feedback and ideas from our open source community have been key in developing this powerful platform. We are therefore very pleased to announce our Development Partner Program, with multiple software vendors and developers creating customized, robust, commercial-grade applications on the WNR3500L.”

Router Features and Performance

The high-performance RangeMax Wireless-N Gigabit Router with USB features a 480MHz MIPS® 74K CPU core with embedded hardware acceleration and incorporates 8 MB of flash memory and 64 MB of RAM, enough to run even business-class applications. It features five 10/100/1000 (one WAN port and four LAN) Ethernet ports with auto-sensing technology with high WAN to LAN speeds in excess of 350 Mbps. It incorporates an 802.11n access point with a wireless repeater mode to extend range. The three internal Metamaterial antennas provide enhanced wireless range and reliable connections.

In addition to its Gigabit Ethernet ports to deliver ultra-fast wired network connections, the WNR3500L router includes a USB 2.0 host port for USB networked storage and for developing other custom applications, including remote access, DLNA/UPnP Media Server support, and USB modem support for 3G/4G/WiMax high-speed cellular connections.

The high-performance WNR3500L protects the network from intruders via a double firewall and Denial-of-service attack prevention. The wireless connection is secured with support for Wi-Fi Protected Access(TM) (WPA), WPA2-PSK, while Push ‘N’ Connect using Wi-Fi® Protected Setup(TM) (WPS) enables users to add computers to the network quickly and securely.

For maximum throughput, NETGEAR recommends the RangeMax Wireless-N Gigabit Router with USB be used with a matching Wireless-N client device such as the NETGEAR RangeMax Wireless-N USB 2.0 Adapter (WN111).

A Community of Developers

The NETGEAR RangeMax Wireless-N Gigabit Router with USB is supported by a dedicated open source router community, http://www.myopenrouter.com/, which provides open source firmware downloads, applications, forums, blogs, articles, source code and user guides. Members also have access to dedicated and responsive support from open source experts.

NETGEAR is also introducing a Development Partner Program that already includes several software application vendors who are creating custom applications for the WNR3500L router that NETGEAR customers can download and enjoy. Companies include:

— BigFoot Networks – network optimized online gaming: Bigfoot Networks (http://www.bigfootnetworks.com/) is a networking technology company that develops hardware and software solutions that significantly improve the online gaming experience. Bigfoot Networks is currently working with the NETGEAR WNR3500L router to deliver optimized home networking solutions for online gamers that combine the performance
benefits and flexibility of the Bigfoot Networks Killer Xeno Pro and the WNR3500L router.
— Leaf Networks – easy remote access: Leaf Networks (http://www.leafnetworks.net/) software and technology securely extends LAN-like connectivity over the Internet to embedded devices, mobile users and software applications. A streamlined version of this software is available to enable owners of the NETGEAR WNR3500L to remotely access their external USB storage device connected to the router USB port from anywhere, as if it were on their home network, using familiar tools such as Windows® File Explorer and Mac® Finder.
— Paragon Software – high-speed USB NTFS read/writes: Paragon Software Group (http://www.paragon-software.com/) is an innovative software
developer focused on two dynamic growth markets: Data Storage, including data security, storage and management for embedded devices, PCs, servers and networks; and Mobile Applications. Paragon NTFS for Linux, based on the company’s unique Universal File System Driver (UFSD) technology, has now been developed for the NETGEAR WNR3500L open source router. It provides full access to a Windows (NTFS-formatted) hard drive attached to the WNR3500L, enabling all PCs, clients and servers, regardless of their operating system, to access and share files to and from the drive via the WNR3500L.
— Sputnik – full-featured hotspot solutions: Sputnik, Inc. (http://www.sputnik.com/) offers SputnikNet, an innovative web application that enables Wi-Fi hotspot providers to run free or paid public-access wireless networks of any size, with full control over branding and customer experience. With Sputnik-powered DD-WRT firmware running on the NETGEAR WNR3500L, SputnikNet enables Wi-Fi hotspot providers to build high-speed wireless networks of any size and manage them centrally over the web. In addition, SputnikNet gives the provider flexible control over Wi-Fi branding and customer experience (free, paid, ad-supported Wi-Fi). The NETGEAR WNR3500L is the first 802.11n Wi-Fi router sold directly by Sputnik with Sputnik-powered firmware.

Pricing and Availability

The NETGEAR RangeMax Wireless-N Gigabit Router with USB (WNR3500L) will be available in Fall 2009 through select retailers, direct marketers, e-commerce sites and value-added resellers. The router is backed by a one-year warranty and 24/7 technical support, and has an MSRP in the U.S. of $139.99.


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