SCM Microsystems Helps Secure Chinese Digital TV Broadcasts

Californian company SCM Microsystems, a leading provider of solutions for the Digital World, will collaborate with broadcast encryption provider Tsinghua Tongfang. The companies will develop and supply Conditional Access Modules (CAMs) based on the Digital Video Broadcast (DVB) which is the common Interface standard for the Chinese digital cable television market.

Tsinghua Tongfang sees the relationship as giving it a leg up over the local competitors and extend its reach beyond China. Tsinghua Tongfang was founded in 1997. It uses the talent and technological advantages of Tsinghua University by incubating vast multitudes of high-tech products in its R&D Center.

SCM realises that with over 270 million households, China represents the world's largest potential market for digital broadcasting and cable television. SCM Microsystems operates in the areas of Digital TV, Digital Video, PC Security and Digital Media Transfer. SCM's advanced silicon solutions, hardware and software enable secure exchange of electronic information for applications such as broadband content delivery by providing controlled access points to platforms such as PCs, digital cameras and digital television set-top boxes. SCM's Conditional Access Module provides individual provincial TV stations the option and flexibility to select the conditional access system they prefer, while ensuring compliance with China's central government's broadcast regulations. SCM modules will be part of Tsinghua Tongfang's conditional access encryption solution for digital broadcast services. Television operators throughout China will be able to use them. The module offer security from illegal copying or unauthorised access to broadcast content.

SCM 's hardware platform and software development kit will enable Tsinghua Tongfang to integrate its conditional access broadcast encryption system into a removable module. This will be compatible with any open set top box. Open set-top boxes secure broadcast signals through the conditional access module, which plugs easily into a standards based Common Interface slot.

Consumers can easily switch from one content provider to another using only exchange modules without having to go through the hassle of adding another set-top box.

Tsinghua Tongfang was selected by China's State Administration of Radio, Film and Television to be one opf the suppliers of the official conditional access systems. These will be deployed in the forthcoming national digital cable TV network. Digital cable TV broadcasts will be initiated next year.

The new digital network will enable the delivery of more programs and value-added services between 30 provinces and major cities across China. The network envisages a subscriber subscriber base of 150 million by 2005 which will expand to 200 million by 2010. 

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