Sunday, 14 June 2009

1st interactive TV proudly Pinoy-made

Rainier Allan Ronda
Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines - A group of young Filipino engineers and designers bidding to make the world’s first interactive television unveiled the improved prototype of their dream computer-TV the other day.

Brian Quebengco, founder of Inovent Electronics Inc., launched the “beta” version of their Illumina LCD Interactive Television (iTV).

Quebengco presented a 32-inch LCD television enhanced with the functions of a personal computer with interactive Internet capability.

With their production of the beta unit, Quebengco said they are coming close to finishing a final prototype that will be mass-produced in the country and sent on a path toward attempting to be the first Filipino electronic product that can challenge the consumer market dominated by products from Japan, South Korea and the United States.

Calling themselves as “inoventors,” Quebengco said their group is attempting to merge the regular LCD TV and personal computer.

He said their group is now in talks with various manufacturers interested in mass-producing the Illumina.

According to Quebengco, they have already signed non-disclosure agreements with the US’ leading chip maker Intel, and local electronics companies Integrated Microelectronics Inc. (IMI) of the Ayala group and EMS Inc. to discuss possible mass production.

The Inovent Electronics team is composed of Quebengco as its founder and leader; chief marketing “inoventor” Mark Ruiz; senior design “inoventors” Peter Can, Jonas Peralta, and Jaed del Mundo; junior program “inoventor” Ryan Bitanga; and junior “inoventors” Victor Yu and Nikko Garcia, who are undergraduates at the De La Salle University (DLSU) taking up electrical engineering and electronics and communications engineering (ECE), respectively.

Quebengco is a professor of industrial design at the DLSU, aside from being an entrepreneur.

The group had produced the Illumina literally from scratch in the garage and different dorm units of the team members.

The Inovent team had presented an “alpha” unit or rough prototype of the Illumina last Nov. 30.

“We have made it sexier,” Ruiz said in the presentation yesterday at the Magnet Café in Bonifacio High Street mall at the Bonifacio Global City in Taguig City.

The Illumina boasts of a complete multimedia device with access to Google Gadgets, Plasma Widgets, and Mac OS X dock Widgets.

It is said to be the first convergence product made in the Philippines that synthesizes the functions of an LCD television and a personal computer.

Housed in a bold and minimalist curved casing, the iTV is equipped with a High Definition (HD) webcam, a Blue Ray DVD slot drive, VoIP, DVR, Wi-Fi/LAN, 1.5 Terabyte hard drive, wireless keyboard, and a Bluetooth head phone built in the back of the remote control to allow motion gesture base.

The iTV allows the user to watch a local or cable show while browsing the Internet and even communicate interactively through voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) and webcam.

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