New Alliance to Establish Common Specifications for Promoting PLC-Based Home Networking

January 7, 2005

Matsushita Electric (Panasonic), Mitsubishi Electric and Sony, today announced that they agreed to establish an alliance for high-speed power line communication (PLC) specifications. These specifications will allow smooth interface between different systems using electric power lines for audio, video and data networking. The new alliance, tentatively called the CE-Powerline Communication Alliance (CEPCA), will promote PLC-capable home networking worldwide by encouraging other consumer electronics and information technology companies to collaborate.

PLC is considered a critical bi-directional communication channel that will support home networking into the future. It will use existing electric power lines in the home to enable high definition video transmission and the use of IP telephones.

Recent technology advances have seen the growth in home networks to connect a variety of products like computers and appliances that can also be accessed remotely. There is a growing demand for ease of access and smooth interconnectivity. Home networks connected to power lines will have authentication and encryption functions so that PLC ensures safe and secure home networking. PLC offers more solutions with multiple networking access points and plug-and-play features. This makes accessing networks simple.

Building a PLC-based home networking requires overcoming difficulties in interoperability between different manufacturers' products. Panasonic, Mitsubishi Electric and Sony have been working collaboratively in interface technologies and the potential applications of home networking based on high-speed power line communication. The result is the CEPCA promoting common PLC specifications for different makers of PLC-based products.

PLC

The new not-for-profit alliance will encourage consumer electronics and information technology companies worldwide to establish an environment where access to PLC-based home networking is available globally.

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