[CES] Panasonic Develops Large Screen YouTube TV

Jan 10, 2008
Naoki Asakawa, Nikkei Electronics
Information concerning popular videos on YouTube and the stock market, etc, can be acquired while viewing a program being aired in the center window.
Information concerning popular videos on YouTube and the stock market, etc, can be acquired while viewing a program being aired in the center window.
[Click to enlarge image]
YouTube-dedicated menu is available.
YouTube-dedicated menu is available.
[Click to enlarge image]
YouTube video looked slightly rough on the large screen, with pixilation, etc.
YouTube video looked slightly rough on the large screen, with pixilation, etc.
[Click to enlarge image]

Matsushita Electric Industrial Co Ltd has developed Internet-compatible televisions that can be used to view video content on "YouTube" video sharing site.

The "PZ850 series" TVs, which will be released in the US in the spring of 2008, will feature this capability. The company demonstrated the operation using the actual equipment at the "2008 International CES."

The capability is dubbed "VIERA CAST." It allows users to choose and view content on Websites including YouTube through menu screen provided by Matsushita. Supported video formats are MPEG-2 and MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 (hereafter H.264).

The system receives YouTube content in the H.264 format instead of the Flash Video format. As for still image content, the system can access "Picasa Web Album," a photo sharing service provided by Google, in the same way it accesses YouTube.

A GUI server operated by Matsushita generates the menu screen displayed on the TV. This server generates GUI parts and codes based on the data it acquires through APIs released by Google and other companies. When rendering photos and videos, however, TVs directly acquire data from YouTube, Google and other servers.

The resulting GUI description language is Javascript. Matsushita also developed a GUI engine that can run Javascript for the "UniPhier processor" SoC inside its TVs. It allows users to select menu items while watching a program being broadcasted in a small window. Some other GUIs including "BD Java" and "SEAD Engine" also run on the UniPhier, but they are not employed this time.

2008 International CES Special Site