• Joseph O'Halloran

4K to the fore

In no way can the exponents of the 4K/Ultra HD industry say convincingly that their products and services are in the mainstream right now but, says Joseph O’Halloran, they have a good shout at saying the pieces are in place for a very interesting 2018. We see how with a stick and a kick, there’s added value in the domain of the added dimension.

Any good reader of Rapid TV News – and why wouldn’t you be? – will almost certainly be familiar with the work of extreme sports and travel content provider Insight TV right now, especially as it regards Ultra HD/4K. In October 2017 alone Insight TV made its US 4K/Ultra HD debut with US cable company Layer3 TV in what was described as a major distribution deal; announced a major production partnership on sports with South Korea’s largest media conglomerate, CJ E&M; forged a partnership with Amazon to make its shows available to members of its Prime online video service; and for good measure inked a distribution deal with incumbent German telco Deutsche Telekom to launch a linear Ultra HD channel on its Entertain TV platform.

Well good for Insight TV but so what, you may say... The so what is that these deals – and the others scored by Insight TV’s peers and rivals – are proof positive that Ultra HD is in the mix with the leading providers. Now nobody could say authoritatively that this means that Ultra HD is in ramp-up mode or even approaching mainstream adoption. there are perhaps only just more than 30 commercial Ultra HD channels being offered right now. But what it does mean is that Ultra HD is being taken seriously by incumbent telcos, content giants and major US cable companies. The platform is being built and it is likely that all will kick off next year.

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