Feeds

Hello Miracast vid-beaming: ANOTHER thing the iPhone 5 hasn't got

Shiver me timbers, 'tis on the Galaxy SIII though

The essential guide to IT transformation

The Wi-Fi Alliance has formally launched Miracast, the 5GHz peer-to-peer wireless connection for echoing a phone onto a TV, with a test suite and the first devices supporting the protocol.

Those devices are the Samsung Galaxy SIII and Echo-P Series TVs, with support promised for the Note range of tablets. Less-specific messages of support have come from Sony, LG, Intel and a host of other silicon manufacturers who reckon Miracast will be the next big thing in Wi-Fi.

Miracast uses the existing 2.4GHz Wi-Fi connection to negotiate a 5GHz Wi-Fi Direct connection specifically for the streaming of video. Chip makers have talked about background streaming, but the killer application is replicating the tablet/phone display on a big screen without all that mucking about with codecs and DRM which DLNA involves (though without the quality too).

DLNA also uses the existing IP network to negotiate use of a big screen, but it also offloads decoding of the video stream to that device, which can be an advantage - the big screen may be better at rendering video than the phone - however it also limits the technique to content both devices can decode, and content which isn't protected by rights management locked to a specific device.

Miracast, in contrast, is effectively a wireless HDMI cable, copying everything from one screen to another using the H.264 codec and its own DRM layer emulating the HDMI system. The Wi-Fi Alliance suggests Miracast could also be used by a set-top box wanting to stream content to a TV, or tablet, but the killer app is replication.

When DLNA works it is top: being able to throw a YouTube clip to the living-room TV and see the quality improve is like science fiction to most of us, but if TV and/or content refuse to play nicely then it all breaks down. Miracast is hoping to capitalise on that failure by reducing the intelligence required of the display, using standard Wi-Fi communications and separating devices into "Source" and "Display" categories.

Wi-Fi Direct, the peer-to-peer protocol used by Miracast, has been almost entirely ignored by the world despite backers (primarily Intel) pushing it as the next evolution of Wi-Fi. The standard allows a device to maintain multiple wi-fi connections, and has been touted as the ideal tech of mice, keyboards and all sorts of unlikely things, but so far adoption has been very slow. Miracast could be the killer app for Wi-Fi Direct, if the DLNA team doesn't get its act together first. ®

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

More from The Register

next story
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
Now that's FIRE WIRE: HP recalls 6 MILLION burn-risk laptop cables
Right in the middle of Burning Mains Man week
Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery
Have you tried turning it off and...? Never mind, here's a replacement
Apple's iWatch? They cannae do it ... they don't have the POWER
Analyst predicts fanbois will have to wait until next year
Super Cali signs a kill-switch, campaigners say it's atrocious
Remote-death button bad news for crooks, protesters – and great news for hackers?
AMD unveils 'single purpose' graphics card for PC gamers and NO ONE else
Chip maker claims the Radeon R9 285 is 'best in its class'
Barnes & Noble: Swallow a Samsung Nook tablet, please ... pretty please
Novelslab finally on sale with ($199 - $20) price tag
Will It Blend? Maybe. BlackBerry’s secret comeback weapon
The Desktop PIM buddy: A 1990s idea finally done right?
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Scale data protection with your virtual environment
To scale at the rate of virtualization growth, data protection solutions need to adopt new capabilities and simplify current features.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?