HDMI is a “single cable” standard for digital video (all ATSC HDTV standards), digital audio (up to 8 channels), and control protocols (so your personal video recorder can control your set-top box, for example).
On the one hand, this is a really useful evolution of DVI. On the other, consumers will be forced to break the law in order to get their “fair-use” rights back with systems that use it.
The HDMI founders are Hitachi, Matsushita Electric (Panasonic), Royal Philips Electronics, Silicon Image, Sony Corporation, Thomson and Toshiba. Given that and its other supporters, it sounds inevitable. | HDMI press release