Pace Micro Technology has struck deals with UK cable operators NTL and Telewest to test its ‘plug and play’ system. The platform can connect home devices without the need for additional cabling or installation. An example use of the technology is the provision of wireless broadband Internet access on multiple PCs.
Pace Micro Technology is to launch consumer trials of a new product, which it claims will offer consumers easy ‘no wires’ broadband connection to multiple PCs. From next month, for the first time, Pace’s wireless ‘plug and play’ home networking devices will be tested in homes throughout the UK as part of a wireless access trial being conducted by NTL and Telewest.
Trial householders will be able to surf the Internet on several PCs – or even roam the house with a laptop connected to the web – while watching digital cable TV or making a telephone call.
Trialists will benefit from fast, always-on broadband connection via a wireless link that communicates between the home gateway (digital cable set-top box or cable modem) and the PC. The home networking technology will effectively create a wireless broadband bubble around the home, within which users are permanently connected to the Internet.
Pace’s home networking platform has been in development for over two years and has been designed as an easy to install and use platform for both the consumer and service provider. Central to this strategy has been a ‘no new wires’ stance. The trial will analyze the ease of consumer installation and how the wireless platform impacts broadband usage.
Our home networking platform will work with digital home gateways already deployed by NTL and Telewest, explains Andy Trott, CEO of Networked & Connected Devices Division. Trialists will simply plug Pace’s Gateway Expander into their Home Gateway’s Ethernet port, attach a pcConnect to as many laptops or desktop PCs as they want and they are ready to go.
The next generation of Pace products will extend opportunities for in-home networks. Operators will be able to combine video, data and voice services using VoIP and Packet Cable standards for wireless distribution throughout the home. A host of new applications will also be possible from audio and game downloads to new opportunities for operators to share incremental revenues with other providers of networked home services by, for example leasing bandwidth to utility companies for remote diagnostics.
Malcolm Miller, Pace’s CEO commented: Our networked home technology is designed for operators such as NTL to create new revenue generating opportunities for minimal additional investment and extend their customer appeal. Pace is excited about deploying its home networking technology in real home situations where we can demonstrate to both operators and consumers, the real and practical services of the home gateway enabled networked home.