The 4k Revolution Will Be Televised

When it comes to high definition video feeds, there is no end in site. Companies are constantly trying to reach the kind of definition that actual film can provide, but haven’t been able to come close yet. 1080p has been the standard, but now 4k threatens to take over with new “Ultra High-Definition” video sources coming from multiple sources, although not everyone has a television that can handle it yet.

Within the next two years Netflix plans to have 4K streaming video in place, on a larger scale than the already seven videos they have using the technology. Their landmark setting series House Of Cards was recently filmed using 4K technology, although it won’t be available until later, forcing those with 4K televisions to watch the premier in plain ol’ HD. They believe that services like theirs are going to be the ideal way of getting this kind of quality, and their popularity might make that true even if other sources surpass it. Their battle, however, will be against Amazon. Depending on which service releases it first, Amazon Prime might gain a new foothold in the streaming wars.
In battling Netflix, Amazon countered with the fact that all of their 2014 series’ will be filmed using 4k. That brings their entire lineup into a realm of four times the power that standard HD formats have. There is a void right now when it comes to 4K content and Amazon hopes to beat Netflix to the punch to fill it. Amazon Prime has traditionally lagged behind Netflix in subscribers, but this might be the push it needs to take control of at least part of the market that it doesn’t currently have.

Next week, YouTube plans to show off their 4K technology at CES in Las Vegas. Google has developed a new video codex that will allow the streams to be used with pieces of hardware from over 20 technology manufacturing companies, making it a possible front runner due to the sheer amount of support that it has.

The Problem
There is a problem with all of this 4K support, though. The amount of data that is involved in these kinds of streaming sources is heavy. REALLY heavy. Consumers will have to have HDMI 2.0 cables, a constant and strong internet connection, and even faster hard drives if they wish to store content on their computer.

That makes it something that many people will come to expect, but might not be the norm for a few years still. In order for something to become mainstream it has to be affordable and 4K doesn’t fit that bill. 4K video cameras have already come down in price and televisions are on their way down, although neither is as cheap as a standard HDTV just yet.

4K Television and Streaming
It will be a long time before television channels are launched in 4K, but streaming content is on the rise and any of these companies could stand to gain in a big way if they successfully make it more accessible.

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