MHL Consortium: 50 Million MHL-Equipped Devices Shipped Globally In 2011

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MHL had a huge 2011. The mobile high-definition connectivity standard went from a relativity unknown port to making its way onto more than 50 million devices. More than 90 licensees are on board with MHL and the connectivity option is nearly standard on tablets, smartphones, HDTVs, and is now making inroads on the digital media streamer market with the tiny Roku LT.

“Since the release of our specification in 2010, MHL Consortium membership has grown five-fold, with OEMs designing and releasing new products at a steady pace,” said Tim Wong, president of MHL, LLC stated in today’s announcement. “In 2012, it’s my expectation that consumers will see even more exciting and innovative products that we hope will enrich their lives.”

The MHL Consortium was founded by Nokia, Samsung, Silicon Image, Sony and Toshiba in 2010 after several years of testing and public demos. MHL brings together the high definition standards of HDMI with similar power management tools found in USB. Devices like the Roku LT are directly powered by the connection. MHL-enabled HDTVs and displays can even charge a connected cell phone, ensuring that the media stream isn’t cut off during playback.

MHL should see even larger numbers in 2012. The port is nearly standard on mobile devices and adoption seems to be increasing on HDTVs. Pretty soon it should be as ubiquitous as USB — hopefully.