Cisco signs on for Comcast RDK
Cisco has joined the roster of vendors that have licensed the Comcast Reference Design Kit, which was implemented to cut down the development cycle for new set-top boxes from two years to one year, or even under one year
A spokeswoman for Cisco confirmed the company’s participation in the Comcast Reference Design Kit (RDK), but said further details weren’t available, although more information will be forthcoming at the SCTE Cable-Tec Expo later this month.
Previously announced licensees for the RDK include Motorola, Evolution Digital, itaas, Entropic, Broadcom and S3 Group.
The Comcast RDK  was developed internally using open-source components and by working with various vendors. The RDK is a community-based project that allows developers, vendors and cable operators to use a defined stack of software on one layer in order to provision set-top boxes and gateways.
The RDK allows all of the interested parties to develop once and then scale across multiple environments – in the CableCard/QAM/MEPG-2 world of today, as well as in the IP environment of tomorrow.
Cable operators that are part of the RDK include, in addition to Comcast, Charter Communications, Time Warner Cable and Liberty Global.
Comcast used the RDK to develop its Pace-made “Parker” boxes that are being used for its X1 service, which was formerly called Xcalibur. After a trial in Augusta, Ga. last year, Comcast has launched out the cloud and IP-based X1 platform Boston and other areas of its footprint. The RDK is also the basis for Comcast’s IP XI3 client device that will work in conjunction with the cable operator’s XG1 hybrid gateways.