Matsushita licenses Apple's FireWire

Matsushita Electric has licensed the emerging FireWire high-speed bus technology from Apple Computer and will integrate the technology into future digital consumer electronic products. FireWire enables peripherals, PCs and set-top boxes to exchange data at speeds of up to 400Mbit/s. Matsushita's rival Sony is also working on IEEE 1394 products, including chips that encrypt data traveling across the interface.

Matsushita Electric has licensed an emerging high-speed bus technology from Apple Computer.

The Osaka-based electronics giant will integrate the FireWire technology into future digital consumer electronic products, according to Deborah Lamascus, spokeswoman at Matsushita's Tokyo office.

The terms of the agreement between Matsushita and Apple were not released.

Originally developed by Apple, FireWire was adopted by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers as a standard called IEEE 1394. The emerging technology is a high-speed serial bus architecture that enables peripherals, PCs and set-top boxes to exchange data at speeds of up to 400M bits per second (bps).

Matsushita and its rival Sony are working on IEEE 1394 products, including chips that encrypt data traveling across the interface.

The companies expect to roll out devices, such as set-top boxes that support IEEE 1394 over the next year, they said. Sony currently ships a full line-up of products including camcorders and PCs that support the interface.

Matsushita's Tokyo office can be reached at http://www.panasonic.com/.

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