Japanese manufacturers develop standard for Internet TV

A group of five major Japanese electronics manufacturers intend to jointly develop a technical standard for television sets that receive video programming over the Internet, the Associated Press reported.

The companies — Sony, Matsushita, Sharp, Toshiba and Hitachi — want the technology to make it easier to access and watch video on the Web. As a group, they expect to sell between 10 million and 20 million sets within the next five years.

To create the standard, the group has formed a company called TV Portal Service with Sony and Matsushita as the lead shareholders, each with 35 percent stake. Other members have 10 percent shares of the enterprise.

Though details weren’t officially released, the new generation of very user-friendly television sets will forego a traditional computer keyboard and feature a remote control that allows selection of Internet programming with the touch of a button.

To reduce boot up time and to avoid virus infections, the companies are avoiding the use of Microsoft Windows and will instead use the Linux operating system.