[English] Consumer Electronics Trends in Home Networking: Digital Life, Beautifully Networked by DLNA
Why aren’t things easier like they used to be, when almost everything took an RCA jack and to get a lousy image all you needed was a SCART connector? Neither were major achievements in the history of technology, but both were relatively compatible and reliable – If something didn’t work, you’d just have to give the plug a good shake and you were set.
Today it’s not so easy because beyond USBs and VGAs there is still an entire range of ports and standards that must work in conjunction with pertinent software. Alas, giving something a good shake to get it working is not going to be enough.
On the other side of things, one can learn from history. This way, we’re not forced to repeat it. Therefore standards can be put in place to ensure that inserting devices activates the same functionality and command-line artistry on monitors of different sizes will no longer required.
Here we’re reporting on DLNA, which stands for the “Digital Living Network Alliance”, and is a union of over 250 electronics manufacturers. To be more precise, it develops and updates technical standards. The goal is for all information and consumer electronic devices with a DLNA certificate to be compatible with one another without problems.
The concept is similar to Apple AirPlay, only it would apply to everything not bearing a fruit logo. If this doesn’t already sound like a digital dream, some of the mentioned manufacturers have already begun integrating DLNA into their commercial products.
Leading the way are virtually all large consumer electronics brands with widely positioned portfolios covering DVD and Blu-Ray players, TVs, hi-fi systems and WLAN hubs. They gladly communicate with one another, as well as with products from other homes.
Let’s begin with a current example using a TV from Sony, LG, Samsung or Philips. A purchased hifi system with DLNA from another brand can be wirelessly docked without much configuration. The same would be true for a media player or media source like a notebook.
Yes, this has been available from a number of well-known companies.
Even better, there’s direct streaming on your TV through an Android smartphone which can be done easily and seamlessly, as if nothing had happened. This is now also in the works with commercial, (but not too expensive) TVs at the heart of the consumer media landscape.
At the IFA in Berlin, a network player was shown to readily attach itself as media satellite (in the kitchen), and a DLNA enabled Blu-ray player could, for example, be quite comfortably placed directly on the bedside table, directly in arms reach.
And now everything comes without a cable. DLNA can function through WLAN.
We’re seeing that technological developments still have a few surprises in store for us, even some that make life easier.