TPCAST and Lattice Partner To Integrate WirelessHD Tech Into Vive Add-On Kit

by Jamie Feltham • January 27th, 2017

We’ve been hands-on with a lot of wireless upgrade kits for VR headsets now, but Vive X company TPCAST’s solution for the HTC Vive remains the most promising.

If you read our impressions of the kit from last year, you might remember a mention of what the group called ‘Wireless HD’ transmissions, which use a 60 ghz wifi band to send 2160 x 1200 video data from a PC to your headset without the need for a wire connecting the two. This week, we’ve learned which company is helping power those transmissions.

Portland-based Lattice Semiconductor announced that it made an exclusive partnership with TPCAST to provide its WirelessHD solution to the company’s wireless products, starting with the Vive upgrade kit. The device, due for global rollout later this year, also utilizes the Lattice’s SiI9396 600 MHz HDMI bridge IC which, according to the company, “enables ultra high definition video transmission” and the ECP3 SERDES-based FPGA, which are “low power, small form factor programmable devices to meet system connectivity requirements.” Lattice’s tech is also used inside the Vive itself.

Lattice’s tech lays important foundations for the TPCAST kit, then, but how does WirelessHD actually work? We reached out to the company to ask.

According to a company representative, WirelessHD using the 60 GHz band “delivers visually lossless, low-latency wireless video transmission” by using a “proprietary beam forming technology” developed by the company’s SiBEAM Technology Group. Lattice says its solution is not “dependent on line of sight and we can maintain superior video transmission in challenging high-motion conditions.”

The company continued that “the transmitter module provides a digital audio/video sink compatible with HDMI, for the wireless transmission of UHD video to any WirelessHD-compliant receiver. The receiver module provides a digital audio/video source compatible with HDMI, for the wireless reception of UHD video from any WirelessHD-compliant transmitter.”

According to the company Lattice’s products are “proven in numerous applications spanning consumer, industrial, and automotive applications,” meaning they were easy to adapt into the VR kit.

TPCAST will be bringing its wireless upgrade kit to the Vive later this year. Will you be cutting the chord on your headset? Let us know in the comments below!

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