Add another player to the list of vendors that have signed up to license Comcast’s Reference Design Kit (RDK) with today’s addition of Hillcrest Labs to the RDK lineup.

With the agreement in hand, Hillcrest will be able to provide software development, integration and testing services to original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), semiconductor manufacturers, software vendors, software integrators and MVPDs who are taking part in the RDK effort.

"Leveraging our depth and breadth of experience as a worldwide leader in motion-enabled products, Hillcrest is excited to be the first motion control technology supplier to support the RDK," said Dan Simpkins , chairman, Founder and CEO, Hillcrest Labs . "We are proud to embrace this cooperative effort to help operators, developers and device vendors innovate at a fast pace, with more intuitive and interactive user experiences."

Hillcrest's FreespaceMotionEnginesoftware is a motion processing software product that can be added to a wide range of devices, including set-top boxes, smart TVs, Blu-ray and streaming media players, smartphones and tablets, game controllers, and other devices,

"One of our goals with the RDK program is to accelerate development of an advanced software solution throughout the industry, and provide enhanced user experiences across a broad set of set-top box, gateway, and system-on-a-chip (SoC) platforms," said Steve Reynolds, senior vice president, CPE and home network, Comcast. "Motion control technology can be a compelling way for operators, developers and device manufacturers to create and deliver richer, more compelling multi-screen TV experiences. With Hillcrest's support, we look forward to strengthening our commitment to providing integrated solutions that help move the industry forward in the next wave of consumer TV interactivity."

Reynolds has previously said that the primary goal of the RDK was to cut the development cycle for set-top boxes and DVRs from two years to one year, or even under one year.

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.

Previously announced licensees for the RDK include Motorola/Arris, Evolution Digital, itaas, Entropic, Broadcom, ThinkAnalytics, and S3 Group. While signing a license to use the RDK helps with the overall effort of cutting down the development cycle for set-top boxes and gateways, it doesn’t necessarily translate into a lucrative contract with Comcast.

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. 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.

Comcast’s Reynolds recently discussed the RDK on a CED webinar panel