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CES: Axar to Stream HD Wirelessly

One glance behind a typical large-screen HD entertainment setup in many homes, especially if it boasts an HD DVR and surround sound audio system and probably one or more HDMI connections, likely will reveal a twisted nest of wires, plugs and cable lines that are thankfully out of sight, out of mind. But as HD and SD screens grow in number throughout the home — thanks to the availability of smaller panels and lower price points — keeping things as wireless as feasible (without sacrificing quality) becomes more desirable.

At CES this week a relatively new technology known as Axar (which is not yet commercially available) will be prototyped for exhibit attendees. Axar was created by ProVision (Booth: Hilton Suite 28-110), which said its wireless attributes will be available in an array of DTVs, STBs and various network devices by next fall.

While Britain-based ProVision is not yet disclosing which manufacturers and brands will sign on with Axar-centric capabilities in the next year (primarily because it probably hasn't gotten that far in the sign-up process quite yet) other firms the company has worked with in the past have included ITV, Sky, Pace, Thomson and Toshiba, among others.

ProVision's software (working title is "Axar1500") streams HD video content "without lag from any HD source," it said — including HD DVRs, Blu-ray players and HD STBs — to other Axar-enabled DTVs or Wi-Fi PC and mobile devices (including smart phones) l throughout the home without the need for additional cables, wires or plugs.

But rather than using a typical wireless network or IP scheme to send and receive in-home signals, Axar works by sending a signal over-the-air from Component or HDMI to a dedicated receiver.

ProVision said it's using a new form of antenna design that creates a wireless signal so robust it can stream live HD within a radius of up to 900 feet. Axar1500 uses open-technology standards for video encoding.