Monsoon Redefines Remote and Wireless TV Viewing

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Monsoon introduces HAVA, which allows consumers to view local TV programming on a notebook, from anywhere in the world over a broadband connection. Additionally, HAVA delivers video streaming wirelessly to multiple users simultaneously from any video source, TV, TiVo™, set top box, DVD, camcorder IPTV by using VBooster technology. HAVA will utilize its MPEG-2 streams to convert any PC or notebook with Media Center compatible software into a full Media Center PC, without having to add an additional TV Tuner, remote, IR Blaster etc. typically required for a complete Media Center experience.

Monsoon demonstrated its groundbreaking wireless video streaming VBooster™ technology at the 2006 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. VBooster, for the first time ever, allows video to be streamed wirelessly from any video source, to multiple Wi-Fi enabled clients in a MPEG-2/DVD video format, compatible with Microsoft’s popular Media Center standard.

The Company has incorporated VBooster and its Remote Video Access engine into its HAVA™ external unit that Monsoon demonstrated at CES. By connecting HAVA to any video source such as a TV, TiVo™, set top, DVD, IPTV or a Camcorder, multiple users can watch their favorite channel or video on a notebook, cell phone or a personal media player simultaneously and wirelessly. Users can also control and watch their favorite TV show or TiVo from anywhere in the world. “HAVA converts a 3 and 10 foot Media Center experience to a 300 foot one! All you need is a Wi-Fi based PC or notebook with Media Center or compatible software, you don’t need any additional hardware,” says Vadim Dagman, Monsoon’s Chief Technology Officer. Dr. Dimitri Varsanofiev, Monsoon’s EVP of Wireless Technologies explained, “VBooster technology enables reliable multicast video delivery in 802.11 networks. VBooster allows the video stream to bypass the access point (AP), effectively doubling the available bandwidth while still keeping the PC or other Wi-Fi enabled clients connected to the AP for non-video traffic. VBooster is capable of streaming more than 20 Mbps in a legacy 802.11a/g network while permitting simultaneous viewing of video on multiple PCs using just one wireless stream.”    

Unlike other competing products such as the Slingbox™, HAVA does not require a wired connection to the router. HAVA substantially differentiates itself from other competitive products, by allowing users to watch video while being able to browse the internet or print, without having to relocate their Access point or changing their network. Moreover, HAVA is able to utilize its MPEG-2 streams to convert any PC or notebook with Media Center compatible software into a full Media Center PC, without having to add an additional TV Tuner, remote, IR Blaster etc. typically required for a complete Media Center experience.

VBooster’s multicasting feature can be used at home, or in business or education environments. For example, it allows a classroom of students to watch video on their Wi-Fi enabled notebooks wirelessly. This feature can enable medical students to record a complex surgical procedure that is being beamed to their laptops from the surgery room and thus may be viewed at a later time.

Using the popular MPEG-4 standard, HAVA enables consumers to watch their TV remotely on their notebooks or cell phones at high quality, provided the broadband connection from their home or business permits more than a 250 Kbps uplink data rate. Using its easy to use software, users can change channels and control their video equipment from outside the house over the broadband connection. HAVA deploys circuitry that allows users from anywhere in the world with different TV standards such as PAL and SECAM to use the product. HAVA adheres to copy protection rules, and has implemented all copy protection features consistent with the Microsoft Media Center standard.

HAVA incorporates ViXS XCode II™ MPEG-2 / 4 encoder chip with dual stream capability that allows HAVA users to watch channels remotely and at home simultaneously. ViXS co-founder Shawn Saleem says “we are extremely pleased to be a partner with Monsoon Multimedia in the new emerging streaming video marketplace. With their VBooster technology, Monsoon is clearly a leader in remote TV viewing, and wireless video streaming over the home network.” With the ViXS XCode solution, Monsoon has developed a product design that streams DVD quality video over the wireless network, further extending the MCE experience.

HAVA, incorporating Monsoon’s VBooster and Remote Video Access technologies, is being licensed to major PC and Consumer Electronics OEM customers. Depending on the configurations, retail prices will vary from $200 to $300 and will be available worldwide in April, 2006.

About Monsoon Multimedia Inc.

Monsoon Multimedia Inc. develops innovative multimedia technologies, services and products for OEM customers in the rapidly expanding digital video marketplace. The Company has operations in India, Russia and the US. The Company’s customers are large OEMs in the Consumer Electronics, PC and Mobile arena. Monsoon’s founders have founded digital video companies such as Dazzle and Emuzed. The Company licenses its technologies and provides high end services on a turnkey basis. For more information on Monsoon, its products and services, visit http://www.monsoonmultimedia.com/

About ViXS Systems Inc.

ViXS Systems Inc. is a fabless semiconductor company providing market-leading video processing and wireless networking technology that enables complete flexibility and freedom for the use of video throughout the home, on any viewing device or storage medium. ViXS chipsets and software enable multimedia PCs, flat panel TVs, and consumer media centers to store, centrally manage, and distribute multiple high-quality MPEG video streams. The company is a key supplier of ICs and full production reference designs to the world’s top consumer electronics and PC manufacturers. ViXS components offer full support for HDTV, DVD, satellite or cable broadcasts and deliver uninterrupted, full Quality of Service video for consumer entertainment, personal computing applications and multimedia gateways. Founded in January 2001, the company is headquartered in Toronto, Ontario and has filed over 90 patents to date. For further information, please visit us at http://www.vixs.com

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Colin Stiles