|Ubiquitous networks are playing an increasingly pervasive role in our daily life, and not only in offices and factories. An increasing number of homes have two or more PCs and use a LAN to share printers or connect to the Internet via a broadband network. DVD recorders with built-in hard disks can store large volumes of music, video, and other multimedia content, and the expectations for home servers are growing. Many new household appliances, security systems and HVAC equipment can be controlled centrally via a network and remotely via the Internet. Thus, home networks now can offer convenience, energy savings and increased security. Sales are rising as utility increases.
The era of home networking will become a reality, creating an economic boom for the electronics industry, if three things happen. Efficient communication protocols must be standardized. Semiconductor solutions must be developed that implement the requisite control and communication functions reliably and cost-effectively. And innovative, helpful and easy-to-use applications and support services must become widely available and affordable. Substantial progress is being made in all these areas.
Renesas is working on many of the building blocks needed for home networks. We are implementing core protocols and middleware, optimizing applications, and developing the semiconductors these systems will require. Step by step, we are building our capability to help shape the future of home networking. For example, we are participating in standardization efforts, collaborating in research and development projects in component technologies, establishing alliances and partnerships, and communicating frequently with customers to understand and fulfill their needs. In particular, we are accumulating the application technology needed to deliver solutions that will boost the growth and spread of home networking in all parts of the world.
In this issue of Edge magazine, we examine issues and technologies at the heart of home networks, while highlighting ways in which Renesas is contributing to the ubiquitous networked society.