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Three Japanese consumer electronics giants have created a new technology to transport Internet and media signals around the home via the electricity network, Panasonic said on Thursday. Sony (6758.T), Mitsubishi (6503.T) and Matsu#a-owned (6752.T) Panasonic have set up the SECA powerline alliance.
They have developed a system to transfer 170 Megabits per second of data through the power lines of a home, Panasonic researcher Ingo Chmielewski told journalists at the electronics trade fair CeBIT. He said the technology is already available and introduction depended on government authorization.
The speed is three times faster than wireless technology Wi-Fi and is fast enough for high definition television signals. Unlike wireless alternatives, the powerline technology performance is stable throughout the home. SECA will compete with existing technology from the HomePlug alliance of 50 companies, including Japanese group Sharp (6753.T). The two systems are not compatible.
HomePlug's current standard is only 14 Mbps but it is thought to be working on a faster version. Sony is also a member of HomePlug, according to the consortium's Web Site and it was unclear if it would be part of both. Sony was not available to comment. Asked why the three companies came up with their own technology and risked yet another format war in the consumer electronics world, Chmielewski said: "We think our technology is better."