Viewers’ appetite for 4K content is growing as sales of 4K UHD TV sets rise with prices continuing to drop – in the UK you can pick up a 4K Samsung Smart TV for example, for as a little as £350. Despite the consumers push for the highest quality images, the broadcast and media industry – with the exception of pay-TV operators – has been slow to adopt 4K UHD technology and services.
Why is this? According to the recent IABM Special Report “A Strategic Industry Analysis” many broadcasters are more interested in HDR technology. 61% of companies said that they prefer to combine HD with enhancements rather than launching 4K only offerings, and 92% said HDR is their preferred enhancement. The benefit of HDR is that the image quality is the same regardless of screen size. You can be watching a programme shot in HDR on a mobile phone or a large screen TV, it doesn’t matter. This is not the case with 4K. 18% of companies included in the IABM report said they have no plans to launch UHD offerings.
There are technical considerations and decisions that broadcasters must make when tackling UHD, including: cameras used, production/post-production workflows, increased data and bandwidth, additional storage, greater processing power, and more, but MAM technology has evolved and is able to carry much of the burden by integrating with the necessary engines and resources. An enterprise MAM – such as Tedial Evolution – can provide an efficient solution for the management, processing and delivery of materials in 4K-8K/UHD formats.
To leverage the full power of the MAM (media asset management system), its functionality should be extended to support video tracks that consist of multiple files. The partial restore of fragments from the timeline is essential to guarantee the scalability of the solution. To minimize the storage size the MAM must manage localized versions intelligently, eliminating the duplication of materials. The MAM should empower the broadcaster to automate material from multiple formats/cameras segmenting video tracks into multiple files including one file per frame (DPX, ARRIRAW). Minimizing the movement of material is critical to the performance of the solution.
In addition, a MAM should also be format agnostic, capable of expanding with new workflows and moving to new formats including 360VR, 4K or 8K or HDR content seamlessly.
Tedial is sponsoring the 4K-HDR Summit, which is being held at the National Pole of Digital Content in Malaga from 6th to 8th November 2019.