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                      | HITACHI HOME | UP | SEARCH | HITACHI

                      News Release

                      December 10, 1998

                      Eight Consumer Electronics Companies to Establish HAVi(TM) Licensing Program

                      For the Development of Digital AV Home Entertainment Networks

                      Grundig A.G., Hitachi, Ltd., Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. (Panasonic), Royal 
                      Philips Electronics N.V., Sharp Corporation, Sony Corporation, Thomson multimedia, 
                      and Toshiba Corporation today announced plans to establish a HAVi(TM) (Home Audio-
                      Video interoperability) licensing program under which the home network architecture 
                      will be made available to the electronics and multimedia industries in Spring 1999.  
                      Philips has been designated to serve as the licensing contact on behalf of the eight 
                      companies.
                      
                      The eight companies plan to implement a joint patent license program that will enable 
                      interested parties to begin developing HAVi compliant products in the Spring 1999.  
                      The license would cover the use of the HAVi logo as well as patents defined by the 
                      HAVi specification that are owned or controlled by the eight companies and deemed to 
                      be essential for the production of compliant hardware and/or software products.
                        
                      License holders will be able to develop HAVi compliant software as well as HAVi 
                      compliant digital AV appliances that can be networked across the IEEE1394 digital 
                      interface.   The HAVi compliant software acts as consumer electronics middleware 
                      which is capable of automatically discovering devices on the network, coordinating the 
                      functions of the various devices, and installing applications and user interface software 
                      on each appliance.  
                      
                      Once connected as a network, HAVi compliant electronics appliances are immediately 
                      interoperable, sharing their resources and capabilities to offer increased functionality 
                      and greater ease-of-use.  Specifically, these appliances will provide the consumer with 
                      the convenience of hot plug-and-play connectivity, appliance interoperability, and 
                      future-proof operation. 
                       
                      Home entertainment networks based on the HAVi specification promise to play an 
                      important role in enabling entertainment providers, electronics manufacturers, and 
                      consumers to take full advantage of a wide range of new interactive services made 
                      possible by the advent of digital technology.  Digital content received from digital 
                      broadcast, network, and package media can be distributed throughout the home to any 
                      appliances on the network.  Interoperable digital AV appliances- used in conjunction 
                      with the appropriate digital content protection technology- will provide an infrastructure 
                      for many new, exciting services, such as high-speed Internet access, video-on-demand, 
                      and home AV server applications.
                      
                      <About Version 1.0 of the HAVi(TM) Specification>
                      
                      HAVi applications will be able to discover and control compliant appliances regardless 
                      of manufacturer.  Moreover, the applications can control individual devices within 
                      different appliances regardless of their physical grouping.  Examples of electronics 
                      appliances include set-top boxes, digital VCRs, and hi-fi audio equipment.  Devices 
                      inside such appliances include tuners, displays, amplifiers, stream converters, clocks, 
                      modems, and Internet access functions.
                      
                      The HAVi specification has been designed to address all aspects of home networking 
                      in an IEEE1394 based, digital AV environment.  The core specification included 
                      components for interchanging messages and events on IEEE1394, registering and 
                      discovering device capabilities across the network, and for managing digital AV 
                      streams and devices.  Version 1.0 offers a more efficient, reliable, and secure solution 
                      featuring the following improvements:
                      
                      - Java(TM) has been adopted as the HAVi bytecode to make it possible to represent 
                      devices and functions through the use of platform independent, object-oriented APIs.  
                      This will allow software developers to create rich, interactive Java based applications 
                      and user interfaces.  HAVi compliant applications can be installed in electronics 
                      appliances by the manufacturer or downloaded from the Internet and other sources.
                      
                      - Version 1.0 incorporates new features, including security that protects against rogue 
                      applications and viruses, an event scheduling element that supports functions such as 
                      programmed recording, and standard programming interfaces that are used to control 
                      device functions.
                      
                      - The new resource manger component performs a wider variety of operations.   It 
                      handles device usage conflicts, coordinates programming of scheduled events (such 
                      as timed recording on a digital recorder), and monitors the network for removal of 
                      reserved devices.
                      
                      Version 1.0Beta of the HAVi(TM) specification can be downloaded, for evaluation purposes 
                      only, from the following Internet URL: http://www.havi.org/
                      
                      -Java(TM) is trademark or registered trademark of Sun Microsystems, Inc. in the 
                      United States and other countries.
                      
                      
                      
                      Press Contacts:
                      
                      Grundig A.G.   	                                Sharp Corporation
                      Roland Stehle                                   Nobuo Minamihori
                      Tel: +49 911-703-8849                           Tel:+81-6-625-3007
                      Fax:+49-911-703-8500                            Fax:+81-6-628-1667
                      presse@grundig.de                               minamihori@osa.sharp.co.jp
                      
                      Hitachi, Ltd.                                   Sony Corporation
                      Yoshiko Shibato                                 Daniel Lintz
                      Tel:+81-3-3258-1111                             Tel:+81-3-5448-6800
                      Fax:+81-3-3258-5480                             Fax:+81-3-5448-3061
                      yoshiko@cm.head.hitachi.co.jp                   lintz@ccom.sony.co.jp
                      
                      Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd.        Thomson multimedia 
                      Yoshihiro Kitadeya                              Marc Meyer
                      Tel:+81-3-3578-1237                             Tel:+33-1-41-86-5003
                      Fax: +81-3-3437-2776                            Fax:+33-1-41-86-5604
                      kitadeya@hqs.mei.co.jp                          meyerm@thmulti.com
                      
                      Royal Philips Electronics, N.V.                 Toshiba Corporation
                      Jeannet Harpe                                   Masao Mochizuki
                      Tel:+31-40-27-33634                             Tel:+81-3-3457-2105
                      Fax:+31-40-27-32729                             Fax:+81-3-3456-4776
                      Jeannet.Harpe@ehv.sv.philips.com                press@toshiba.co.jp
                      
                      
                      


                      WRITTEN BY Secretary's Office
                      All Rights Reserved, Copyright (C) 1998, Hitachi, Ltd.

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