Sony commits to Tru2way TV

Sony has signed an agreement with the US’s six largest cable companies to produce a TV that will receive digital signals without the need for a set-top box.
The Japanese electronics company will make an LCD set based on the Tru2way cable platform introduced in January at CES by Comcast.
Tru2way allows interactive cable services to be integrated directly into devices without the need for set-top boxes, which are made by companies such as Motorola Inc and Cisco Systems Inc, which owns Scientific Atlanta.
The agreement is between Sony and Comcast Corp, Time Warner Cable Inc, Cox Communications Inc, Charter Communications Inc, Cablevision Systems Corp and Bright House Networks.
Between them the six companies serve more than 82 per cent of cable subscribers in the US.
The National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA), which represents cable television operators in the US, said customers would still be able to attach their own devices – such as TiVo digital video recorders.
Under the new system, customers will still need to get a cable card from their provider.
The cable association said it was hopeful other electronics manufacturers would also agree to use the same technology.
Kyle McSlarrow, president of NCTA, said the Sony announcement meant they had headed off action by the US’s Federal Communications Commission to impose a two-way standard on the industry.
Cable companies and consumer electronics manufacturers have been feuding for a decade about how best to deliver cable services to customers while allowing them to buy equipment of their own choosing.
“Every member of the FCC has encouraged the parties to resolve these highly technical issues in private-sector negotiations,” said McSlarrow.
“This is a landmark agreement which will provide a national, open and interactive platform resulting in more choices of services and products for consumers.”
Sony is not the first consumer electronics company to announce a device based on the platform.
At CES, Panasonic announced two HD televisions and a portable digital video recorder that use Tru2Way.
And last month, Samsung, the world’s largest producer of HDTVs, announced its own Tru2way TV and high-definition DVR.

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