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Research at Intel Day 2005

Some of things on show were close to being real products such as the personal media server. A demo of this device was provided on the second day along with a wide range of other in development demos. The personal media server demo was running on a Motorola E680 mobile phone/PDA style device. The demos consisted of streaming data over Bluetooth from the E680 to a set-top-box as well as connecting two E680’s to a laptop and copying data between to two via a Windows application.

This way, data stored on a device with a small screen can be displayed on a device with a large screen and Intel thinks this is the way forward until foldable displays become a reality. All the data would still be stored on the mobile device, so there shouldn’t be any copyright or DRM issues by streaming the data to a device with a larger screen. Images stored on the phone could also be displayed via a web interface on both the PC and the set-top-box.

A quite different application for streaming data was also shown, but this time it was Halo that was streamed over Ethernet to a set-top-box that was connected to an LCD TV. There was no real signs of lag but as the PC was using the latest dual core Pentium Extreme Edition processor at least the source should’ve been fast enough. Again this would require a very fast PC to work and it might not be suitable for online gaming as there would be a slight delay by having the data from the server pass through the PC first.

There was also a demo of the next generation of portable media player devices from Intel. Apart from faster hardware and support for more file formats the most important change is going to be full VGA resolution displays. This means that less content has to be resized to play properly on these types of devices. Although the demo platform doesn’t look like much, the quality of the video displayed was far superior to any of the portable video players I have seen to date.

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