Wireless for the Flat Screen

Monster makes cables — the kind you buy for hooking up audio and video equipment. In an increasingly wireless world, what’s a cable company to do?

Join in, that’s what. Today, Monster announced a strategic partnership with chipmaker Tzero Technologies of Sunnyvale, California — a partnership that will result in Monster using Tzero’s ultrawideband chips to wirelessly connect flat-panel HDTVs.

The first joint product will be a wall-mounting bracket for a flat panel display, which will include conditioned power and the Tzero Wireless for HDMI (High Definition Multimedia Interface ) in a single package that any consumer can install — no professionals needed. The bracket will hold any HD flat-panel set measuring 60 inches diagonally or smaller. The Wireless for HDMI will connect via UWB to other components like HD-DVD or Blu-ray DVD players or DVRs. They expect to have the product on the market by the fall of 2007.

Wireless for HDMI is a reference design Tzero publishes in conjunction with Analog Devices , using the TZ 7000 series chipset and the ADV202 from ADI. It is WiMedia MBOA standard compliant. It compresses data using JPEG2000 and supports HD resolutions up to 1080i. Like regular HDMI cables, Wireless for HDMI remains compatible with High-Bandwidth Digital Content Protection (HDCP) Digital Rights Management technology created by Intel.

Monster will be the exclusive reseller of Wireless for HDMI in wall-mounting brackets; likewise, Monster pledges to only use Tzero parts.

Monster sells products in a channel of 20,000 stores in 70 countries, and claims a product of this nature will help combat the “hidden installation costs and hassles [that] continue to shock consumers,” according to “Head Monster” and company founder Noel Lee.

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