Switched Digital Video (SDV) has been the bane of CableCARD users, notably owners of the TiVo Series3 and TiVo HD. SDV channels cannot be tuned by UDCP (unidirectional digital cable products) CableCARD devices, such as TiVo, as SDV requires bidirectional communication with the head end.
Enter the Tuning Resolver. As previously reported, the Tuning Resolver is a bidirectional communications terminal which is designed to connect to a UDCP via USB, to enable SDV support. Of course, the UDCP most people refer to when discussing the Tuning Resolver is TiVo. Release is expected in 2Q08, and it is eagerly anticipated by many users.
Now Multichannel News is reporting that CableLabs has received the first version of a PC-based testing tool which will allow them to test the Tuning Resolver’s functionality. The tool was developed by Solekai Systems in Boulder, CO and is known as the Tuning Resolver Interface Simulator (TRIS).
â€œWe at CableLabs are encouraged by the flexibility this tool offers to allow us to validate the interfaces between UDCP [unidirectional digital cable products] and tuning resolver devices, and ultimately provide UDCP devices with the ability to access switched digital video services in the field,â€ CableLabs vice president of advanced media platforms So Vang said, in a prepared statement.
This brings the Tuning Resolver one step closer to release. Development was only agreed upon last August, so getting the box to market in 2Q08 is really a fast-track development cycle for the cable industry. Charter isn’t using SDV in my area (yet?), but I know there are a lot of TiVo users out there for whom the Tuning Resolver can’t arrive fast enough.