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June 27, 1990

GENERAL INSTRUMENT JOINS THE US HIGH DEFINITION TELEVISION CONTENDERS

By CBR Staff Writer

In the US a new contender has materialised in the increasingly tangled area of high definition television, offering technology which may become the US national television broadcast standard. The Federal Communications Commission set a June 1 deadline for proposals on a simulcast system that works on today’s television sets and fits onto the existing broadcast spectrum. On June 1, the VideoCipher satellite encryption division of New York-based General Instruments Corp filed its proposal promoting its DigiCipher technology. Other proposals before the Commission are from NHK, the Japanese broadcasting system; Zenith Electronics Corp; an international consortium of General Electric’s National Broadcasting Corp, NBC, with Philips NV and Thomson SA – which bought the television operations of General Electric’s RCA Corp acquisition, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The systems will be tested for 12 to 18 months before the government chooses the standard in 1993. VideoCipher plans to have its high definition television prototype system before the Commission in February 1991. Whether it becomes the US standard or not, the company plans to develop the compression technology for overseas markets.

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