Sky News Update: Sky get the first live ultra HD broadcast throughout the UK when the stream the Stoke City, West Ham football match to a select audience.
“Is this the TV revolution that will succeed where 3D has failed? Is this the moment when, finally, it’s decisively found that watching a match on TV really is better than going to the event itself?
The BBC trialled so-called ultra high-definition TV during the Olympics. Using a private high speed broadband network it sent extraordinary pictures to a small number of sites including Broadcasting House, beaming images that are four times as good as the current best high definition images. But the Sky trial is the first to use satellites that are also available for commercial purposes to send images around the country – and while there are no specific plans to launch a commercial service at a specific date, Japanese broadcasters have already announced that they will transmit the World Cup final live from Brazil in ultra-high definition. Sky won’t want to be behind.
How does it look?
Sky is testing its ultra-high-definition coverage on four Sony televisions each costing £25,000 – pictures this pretty don’t yet come cheap. But already smaller sets, at around 55”, are available for £4,000, and costs will fall rapidly. But just as many viewers felt high definition was an unnecessary improvement, today’s UHD will be the industry standard in a few years time.
So what do these pictures look like? In short, ultra-high definition is so vivid it’s almost unreal. Best viewed on big screens, it offers more detail than your eyes can see, and shows more than they would see if you were at a real sporting event. If HD showed every blade of grass, UHD shows every ligule and leafbud. That means it takes some getting used to, but once you’ve lived with UHD, there’s no going back.
But there will be plenty of bumps along that road – few users will spend the money on TVs this good unless there is content to justify the purchase, yet few broadcasters will spend money on the programming until there is a good number of TVs already out there.
It’s a catch-22, but it’s one that is mitigated by the fact that many Hollywood films are already being made in the new standard anyway. Getting the new pictures to TV sets, however, remains a challenge: standard spectrum used for regular TV is too full, and the UK’s broadband network is simply not yet good enough for it to be sent over the web. That leaves satellite networks such as Sky’s effectively the only option for now.”
This story was originally sourced from The Telegraph, where more details can be found regarding this topic. The role of ultra HD in the home has yet to be established as the prices are so high but this doesn’t stop the companies trying new products and enticing these specially selected audiences in to see what’s on offer. Click Here for more information on Sky.
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