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TCL Smart TVs Add Hillcrest's Motion Control

5/23/2012 12:01:00 AM Eastern

Rockville, Md. -
China-based electronics manufacturer TCL Multimedia (TCL) will use Hillcrest
Lab's Freespace motion-control software for forthcoming TCL Android-based smart
TVs, including the flagship V7500 Android 4.03 smart TV and motion-sensing
remotes due later this year.

The companies said
the TCL smart-TV system will be available in China this month before rolling
out to other markets later this year.

TCL has acquired a worldwide license to Hillcrest's Freespace in-air pointing
and motion-control technology for current and future products, the companies
said.

Hillcrest's
Freespace MotionEngine smart-TV software and Freespace Gesture Recognition
Engine enables motion, gesture and cursor control to navigate an array of
smart-TV menus and interactive controls.

This includes the
web browser, games and various Android applications. The Freespace MotionEngine
smart-TV software is said to provide precise motion data for mouse-like point-and-click
functionality, and motion gaming applications.

The Freespace
Gesture Recognition Engine allows using up to 50 simple gestures to execute
various tasks, from twisting the remote to adjust volume to alpha-numeric
in-air gestures to change channels, switch applications or function as
passwords to login to individual user accounts. 

"As China's market
leader in smart TVs and consumer electronics, we are proud to work with TCL and
contribute to its line of Android-powered smart TVs," stated Chad Lucien, Hillcrest
Labs sales and marketing senior VP. "Together, we are providing more compelling
options and a simpler user interface for smart-TV users. Our collaborative
efforts are a concrete example that high-precision, inertial motion technology
is the ideal choice for smart-TV user interface navigation, motion gaming,
gesture control and more."

According to a
recent NPD Group/DisplaySearch report, TCL now has No. 1 overall TV market
share in China (18.1 percent), up from No. 2 a year ago, TCL said.

Hillcrest said its
MotionEngine software can be added to a wide range of devices, including smart
TVs, Blu-ray and streaming media players, smartphones and tablets, game
controllers and more.

The MotionEngine
software interfaces with an array of MEMS sensors, including accelerometers,
gyroscopes and magnetic sensors.

TCL Android TVs with
the Freespace MotionEngine and Gesture Recognition Engine systems will offer simple
navigation of smart-TV user interfaces -- advanced motion processing -- that translates
natural hand movements into onscreen commands.

Users will not
have to point the remote at the screen to control the cursor, and there are no
"line of sight" requirements, TCL said. This allows the user to sit, stand,
recline, lie down or move around the room while maintaining full control of the
smart-TV user interface.

Hillcrest's Freespace
MotionEngine is also embedded in the new line of Roku 2 streaming-media players
and LG's smart TVs.

Other licensees of
the technology have included Eastman Kodak, Logitech, SMK Electronics, Sony
Computer Entertainment, Universal Electronics and others.

 

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