Taiwan DTV Targets Laptops

UCLA's Asia Pacific Media Network is carrying a Taipei Times article Digital TV Moves From the TV Set to the Notebook PC that says notebook computer owners may soon be able to watch DTV on their laptops. Twinhan Technology Co. introduced a cigarette pack-size receiver that plugs into a computer's USB port to allow access to free DTV signals. Five free terrestrial DTV channels are scheduled to "soft launch" in Taiwan next May with the official launch scheduled for August. Jason Chang, director of Twinhan's product and marketing department, was quoted in the article saying, "I estimate that more than 50 percent of notebook users will be interested in this digital television function." The article said advances in technology were expected to shrink box by one half by next year and that eventually it could be offered as a component inside the computer.

The cigarette pack-sized USB DTV tuner is currently being manufactured for companies in Germany, the UK, Australia and China, according to Chang. Unfortunately, no information was provided on whether an ATSC/VSB version of the box is planned for the U.S. market.