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As long ago as 1996 TCL Multimedia set up a digital TV research facility in Shenzhen. The combination of our resulting R&D expertise with our financial strength has enabled us to capitalise on our state-of-the-art digital TV technology and produce concrete results, while our digital TV R&D always keeps pace with European, US and Japanese manufacturers.

Our latest step in the direction of global expansion was the creation of set-top box R&D, which required us to integrate our R&D resources in Shenzhen with companies in Indianapolis (US) and Villigen (Germany). Up to the time of writing the TCL set-top box has been proving popular in a number of cities in China, and additionally orders have been coming in from North America, Australia, the Philippines, India and Europe.

In 2006 this division invested some RMB 30 million in DVB production equipment, featuring the most advanced R&D and testing technology. This has enabled us to develop a wide range of digital TV products encompassing major platforms such as ST, ZORAN, ATI, INTEL, VIA, PHILIPS, TI and Sinomanic. The main products in 2006 included DVB-C/-T/-S STBs, IPTV STBs, TDMB STBs, ATSC STBs, with sales destined for all parts of the world.

For the time being the STB division mostly does work for domestic Chinese broadcasters, though it must be said that it runs its own research, production and sales, and also manages its own brands. Our plans include major promotion of its IPTV products at home and abroad by promoting its STB products to overseas buyers, a move which will involve commencing ODM/OEM work.