Mobile High-Definition Link

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Mobile High-Definition Link (MHL) is a proposed industry standard for a mobile audio/video interface for directly connecting mobile phones and other portable consumer electronics (CE) devices to high-definition televisions (HDTVs) and displays. The MHL standard features a single cable with a low pin-count interface able to support up to 1080p high-definition (HD) video and digital audio while simultaneously charging the connected device.

MHL is being developed by the MHL Consortium, a consortium of developers of mobile devices.

Contents

Features

By transporting the digital content in digital form, the full impact of the picture (whether still images or video) can be seen on HDTVs.

Connectors

As noted in the 'Features' section, the MHL standard is connector agnostic. There have been 2 connectors used on phones so far:

5-pin MHL-USB Connector

The first implementations dual-purpose the most popular mobile connection (micro USB) and the most popular HDTV connection (HDMI). Other than the connectors being used, no USB nor HDMI technology is being used. It is exclusively MHL signalling through the connectors and over the cable.

11-pin MHL-USB Connector

The Samsung Galaxy S III uses a connector that is similar to the original 5-pin MHL-USB connector, but it uses 11-pins in order to achieve a few functional improvements over the 5-pin design.

History

Silicon Image originally demonstrated a mobile interconnect, based on its TMDS technology, at the January 2008 Consumer Electronics Show (CES).[2] This interface was termed "Mobile High Definition Link" at the time of the demonstration, and is a direct precursor of the implementation announced by the MHL Consortium. The company is quoted as saying it did not ship that original technology in any volume, but used it as a way to get the working group started.[3]

A Working Group was announced in September 2009 to develop a specification based on MHL Technology.[4] The MHL Consortium was announced by the companies of the Mobile High-definition Working Group on April 14, 2010. Nokia, Samsung, Silicon Image, Sony and Toshiba had been working on a specification since the Working Group announcement in September, 2009.[5][6]

MHL, LLC is the agent for overseeing the licensing and promotion of the MHL specification.

Introduction

An abridged version of the specification was made available for download on April 14, 2010 from http://www.mhlconsortium.org/. A non-refundable fee of US$100 is charged. The MHL 1.0 Specification was announced on June 30, 2010.[7] Details on adopter agreement are also available on the MHL Consortium website.[8]

The Compliance Test Specification (CTS) was announced on December 21, 2010.[9]

Reception

Almost immediately after the specification was announced, articles appeared highlighting the use of the industry-standard micro-USB connector to send high-definition video and audio, as well as take in power, and use a command bus between the mobile device and the TV.[10][11]

Some writers confuse the origins of MHL with that of HDMI, while also stating that MHL is based on Silicon Image's technology released in 2008.[12][dead link]

The Galaxy S III MHL port controversy

The Galaxy S III is the first MHL device to use a different connector - one that is not compatible with all other MHL devices and accessories.[13] Consumers assumed that the MHL branding ensured compatibility so they were surprised when MHL accessories did not work with the Galaxy S III[14] (the incompatibility is due to the S3 using an 11 pin connector rather than a 5 pin).

After about a month of confusion following the release of the Galaxy S III a movement developed around boycotting Samsung accessories - but this was ended once the explanation for the 11-pin connector came out.[15]

Products

Silicon Image announced a family of chips supporting MHL including a transmitter, a bridge and a port processor.[16]

LG Electronics available on December 4, 2011 AT&T Wireless and LG Electronics Nitro HD (AT&T) / Optimus LTE (LTE carriers), a True HD AH-IPS panel display on the device with MHL output abilities for any TV equipped with HDMI input. [17] [18][19]

Samsung announced at the 2011 Mobile World Congress that their Galaxy S II mobile devices feature MHL connections.[1][20]

HTC announced at the 2011 CTIA that their 'EVO 3D' mobile device supports MHL output and in addition that the HTC 'Sensation' will also have this capability, as well as its successor, the 'Sensation XE'. The HTC Rezound, which is a sister device to the Sensation XE also has the MHL port.

Roku unveiled the 'Roku Streaming Stick' on January 4, 2012 in an official blog post entitled 'There’s a Better Way to Build a Smart TV'. The Streaming Stick is said to include everything comprised in a Roku player—built-in WiFi, processor, memory and software—and will deliver all the channels found on the Roku platform today.[21]

Onkyo and Silicon Image Announce the World’s First A/V Receivers Featuring InstaPrevue™ and MHL™ Technologies [22]

The following retail products are known to have MHL technology available:

Display Devices

LG

Samsung

SONY

Toshiba

Mobile devices

Home Theater Receivers

Pioneer

Onkyo

Integra Home Theater

References and notes

  1. ^ a b "MHL High-definition Link". YouTube. February 15, 2011. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZtwTcnR0hqA. Retrieved 2011-02-15. 
  2. ^ "HDMI plugs into cameras, cellphones". EE Times. January 8, 2008. http://www.eetimes.com/electronics-products/logic-interfaces-products/4101084/HDMI-plugs-into-cameras-cellphones. Retrieved 2010-04-14. 
  3. ^ "Consortium backs mobile interface for high def video". EE Times. April 14, 2010. http://www.eetimes.com/electronics-news/4088597/Consortium-backs-mobile-interface-for-high-def-video. Retrieved 2010-04-14. 
  4. ^ "Leading Companies Form Mobile High-Definition Interface Working Group to Drive Industry Standard for Mobile Wired Connectivity". Silicon Image. September 28, 2009. http://www.siliconimage.com/news/releasedetails.aspx?id=591. Retrieved 2009-09-30. 
  5. ^ "Leading Companies Form MHL Consortium to Advance Standard for Wired Mobile Connectivity". MHL, LLC. April 14, 2010. http://www.mhlconsortium.org/news/release.aspx. Retrieved 2010-04-14. [dead link]
  6. ^ "Leading Companies Form MHL Consortium to Advance Standard for Wired Mobile Connectivity". Business Wire. April 14, 2010. http://businesswire.mercurynews.com/news/mercurynews/20100414006867/en/Leading-Companies-Form-MHL-Consortium-Advance-Standard. Retrieved 2010-04-14. [dead link]
  7. ^ "MHL 1.0 SPECIFICATION AND ADOPTER AGREEMENT NOW AVAILABLE". MHL, LLC. June 30, 2010. http://www.mhlconsortium.org/news/release.aspx#Specification1. Retrieved 2010-06-30. 
  8. ^ "Adopter Information". MHL, LLC. June 30, 2010. http://www.mhlconsortium.org/adopters/adopter_information.aspx. Retrieved 2010-06-30. 
  9. ^ "MHL CONSORTIUM RELEASES COMPLIANCE TEST SPECIFICATION TO GROWING ADOPTER BASE". MHL, LLC. December 21, 2010. http://www.mhlconsortium.org/news/press_release.aspx?prid=4. Retrieved 2010-12-22. 
  10. ^ "HDMI: getting simpler, or on the way out?". What Hi-Fi? Sound and Vision. July 2, 2010. http://whathifi.com/News/HDMI-getting-simpler-or-on-the-way-out/. Retrieved 2010-07-30. 
  11. ^ "MHL Consortium Releases High-Definition Link Specs for Mobile Devices". Infotech Spotlight. July 2, 2010. http://it.tmcnet.com/topics/it/articles/90801-mhl-consortium-releases-high-definition-link-specs-mobile.htm. Retrieved 2010-07-30. 
  12. ^ "MHL Consortium rolls out HDMI-lite spec for portables". CAT-iq Blog. July 2, 2010. http://blog.cat-iq.org/post/2010/07/02/MHL-Consortium-rolls-out-HDMI-lite-spec-for-portables.aspx. Retrieved 2010-07-30. 
  13. ^ "Standards be damned: Samsung Galaxy S III requires special MHL adapter". 2012-06-08. http://www.mobileburn.com/19823/news/standards-be-damned-samsung-galaxy-s-iii-requires-special-mhl-adapter-. Retrieved 2012-07-2. 
  14. ^ "Samsung MHL to HDMI Adapter not working??". http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1679695. Retrieved 3 July 2012. 
  15. ^ "Galaxy MHL website". http://www.galaxymhl.com. Retrieved 3 July 2012. 
  16. ^ "Silicon Image Unveils First MHL Products". Silicon Image. October 4, 2010. http://www.siliconimage.com/news/releasedetails.aspx?id=617. Retrieved 2011-02-15. 
  17. ^ "LG Nitro HD Delivers First True High-Definition Experience for AT&T Customers" (Press release). AT&T Wireless. November 28, 2011. http://www.att.com/gen/press-room?pid=22079&cdvn=news&newsarticleid=33416. Retrieved 2011-11-28. 
  18. ^ "WORLD’S FIRST HD LTE SMARTPHONE ANNOUNCED IN CANADA" (Press release). LG Electronics. November 8, 2011. http://www.lgnewsroom.com/newsroom/contents/61609. Retrieved 2011-11-08. 
  19. ^ "LG LAUNCHES OPTIMUS LTE, FIRST 4G HD SMARTPHONE IN KOREAN MARKET" (Press release). LG Electronics. October 4, 2011. http://www.lgnewsroom.com/newsroom/contents/61566. Retrieved 2011-10-04. 
  20. ^ "The Samsung Galaxy S2 is Announced". MobileReview. February 15, 2011. http://forum2.mobile-review.com/showthread.php?p=920977. Retrieved 2011-02-15. 
  21. ^ "There’s a Better Way to Build a Smart TV". Roku Official Blog. January 4, 2012. http://blog.roku.com/blog/2012/01/04/roku_streaming_stick/. Retrieved 2012-01-04. 
  22. ^ "Onkyo and Silicon Image Announce the World’s First A/V Receivers Featuring InstaPrevue™ and MHL™ Technologies." (Press release). Onkyo US. December 21, 2011. http://www.us.onkyo.com/press_releases.cfm?id=243. Retrieved 2012-06-06. 
  23. ^ a b "MHL technology links up Toshiba TVs to the home". bigbrownbox.com.au. September 27, 2011. http://www.bigbrownbox.com.au/blog/general-information/mhl-technology-links-up-toshiba-tvs-to-the-home. Retrieved November 5, 2011. 
  24. ^ "Cracking Open the 55" Samsung LED TV (UN55D6300SF)". TechRepublic. June 1, 2011. http://www.techrepublic.com/photos/cracking-open-the-55-samsung-led-tv-un55d6300sf/6241051?seq=44. Retrieved November 5, 2011. 
  25. ^ Gorman, Michael (August 31, 2011). "Toshiba's new Regza WL800A HDTV hooks up with your smartphone via MHL". Engadget. http://www.engadget.com/2011/08/31/toshibas-new-regza-wl800a-hdtv-hooks-up-with-your-smartphone-vi/. Retrieved November 5, 2011. 
  26. ^ "MHL now shipping on the Toshiba WL800A HDTV - YouTube". http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ll_76_Z01zo. Retrieved November 5, 2011. 
  27. ^ http://blog.clove.co.uk/2012/06/08/samsung-galaxy-s3-uses-a-different-mhlhdmi-adapter/

Also see

External links