HPA Tech Retreat: Call for Proposals and Roundtable Topics

The Hollywood Professional Association (HPA) just called for proposals for the 2019 HPA Tech Retreat, which will take place February 11–15 at the JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa in Palm Desert, California. Proposals submitted during this process make up the main portion of the conference, which focuses on the intersection of creative media and technology. The HPA Tech Retreat is made up of the Tech Retreat Extra (TR-X), the Supersession, breakfast roundtables, an Innovation Zone, and the main conference. Continue reading HPA Tech Retreat: Call for Proposals and Roundtable Topics

The World Cup Is Finally Available in 4K HDR in Your Home

For the first time, the FIFA World Cup is available in 4K HDR in your living room. Those interested in viewing the world’s single biggest sporting event this way have several choices. Via the Fox Sports World Cup app, cable subscribers can view 4K HDR streams on Hisense’s H6E, H8E or Laser models. Dish is offering 56 of the 64 games live in 4K HDR, and DirecTV is broadcasting all the games that way. Layer3 TV/Altice is also broadcasting in 4K and Comcast Xfinity X1 subscribers can watch 4K HDR on demand the next day. Continue reading The World Cup Is Finally Available in 4K HDR in Your Home

Hulu to Offer High-Quality Live Streaming With 60fps Support

One of the criticisms of Internet-based live television services involves video quality limitations for sports fans. Some of the services support 30fps, a frame rate that leads to problems when streaming live sports. Hulu announced this week that it plans to address this concern with a staggered rollout of support for 60fps for its Live TV service. The streams will initially be available for select channels and devices, to be followed by an expanded rollout. Support for higher-quality streams could attract new customers for Hulu, especially on the eve of the Winter Olympics. Continue reading Hulu to Offer High-Quality Live Streaming With 60fps Support

Twitch to Start Streaming 1080p at 60fps in Upcoming Weeks

Amazon broadcasting site Twitch announced that its support for 1080p video resolution at 60 frames per second will significantly improve video quality when live-streaming via the platform. To accommodate the higher frame rate, Twitch is lifting its 3.5-megabit ingest bitrate restriction. Twitch product manager Noreen McInnis says the company recommends “3-to-6 megabits for most streams, skewing toward the higher end for 1080p broadcasts or faster, more demanding games.” Continue reading Twitch to Start Streaming 1080p at 60fps in Upcoming Weeks

Industry Visionaries Discuss VR Production at Oculus Connect

Best practices for remaining on budget, the importance of planning and testing, whether to capture in mono or stereoscopic 3D, techniques for directing talent, and how to treat (or not to treat) VR environments were among the many topics discussed during a compelling panel about creating 360-degree video at the Oculus Connect 3 conference in San Jose last week. Four accomplished virtual reality production executives and technologists shared their practical knowledge and recommendations for navigating the uncharted waters of budgeting and producing VR content. Continue reading Industry Visionaries Discuss VR Production at Oculus Connect

GoPro Hero5 Features Cloud-Connectivity and Voice Control

GoPro has revealed some of the details of its upcoming Hero5 camera, including a short instructional video that shows the camera in greater detail. Design-wise, Hero5 looks similar to the Hero4 and GoPro’s previous cameras, with its rectangular shape and the lens and front-facing screen in the same corners. New for Hero5 is the fact that this is GoPro’s first camera to be connected to the cloud; a fully charged camera will automatically upload all the footage to the user’s GoPro account. Also new is voice control.

Continue reading GoPro Hero5 Features Cloud-Connectivity and Voice Control

Samsung Demos Gear 360 Camera for Virtual Reality Capture

Slated for release in Q2 2016, Samsung’s new Gear 360 is a compact camera with two lenses designed to capture 360-video for its Samsung Gear VR viewing system. At 153 grams, the Gear 360 is one gram lighter than the new Galaxy S7 and includes a pair of microphones for audio capture, a microSD slot for memory expansion up to 128GB, and a removable battery for up to 140 minutes of active use. Unlike the Project Beyond 360-camera, with 16 HD cameras, demonstrated in late 2014, the Gear 360 appears to be aimed at consumer use. Continue reading Samsung Demos Gear 360 Camera for Virtual Reality Capture

HPA Tech Retreat Looks at Approaching Tipping Point in Media

The annual HPA Tech Retreat opened in Indian Wells, California, near Palm Springs. The sold-out event hosts 600 executives and technologists in broadcast, cable, digital and feature film industries. In addition to an “Innovation Zone,” the new term for the former demo room, the HPA Tech Retreat is known for its days-long series of lectures and panels, all of which are a deep dive into technology. All of Tuesday was devoted to a single topic: Snowflake Workflows are Turning into Distribution Snowstorms! Continue reading HPA Tech Retreat Looks at Approaching Tipping Point in Media

GoPro Unveils Smaller Hero Camera, Plans for VR and Drone

On July 12, GoPro will debut Hero4 Session, its latest action-video camera, priced at $399 and featuring a dramatically different form factor: a 1.5-inch cube that weighs only 2.6 ounces, with one button for on and off. In addition, GoPro founder Nick Woodman has announced the company’s expansion into virtual reality with a 16-camera array for an as-of-yet undisclosed price, to debut in August. Scheduled for next year, GoPro also plans to launch a quadcopter drone with built-in GoPro camera. Continue reading GoPro Unveils Smaller Hero Camera, Plans for VR and Drone

NAB 2015: Why Content Creators Should Care About VR (Panel)

We are past marketing and stunt VR, and now need to move quickly to paid live action VR experiences for the media to succeed, Ted Schilowitz, Fox’s Futurist said during the NMX panel “Why Content Creators Should Care About Virtual Reality” at the NAB Show in Las Vegas this week. Tim Street, board member of the International Academy of Web Television, moderated the panel that also included Cosmo Scharf, the founder of VRLA, Ikrima Elhassan from Kite & Lightning, and Michael Kintner, CEO of 260 Heroes. Continue reading NAB 2015: Why Content Creators Should Care About VR (Panel)

Nvidia Designs New Pixel-Dense LCD Panels for VR Headsets

Researchers at Nvidia have found a trick that solves the problem of users being able to see the pixels in their VR headsets. By using a “cascaded display” involving two LCD panels, the researchers found that they could quadruple the pixel density of the headset, making pixels invisible to the eye even at close range. The cascaded displays also have a faster frame rate, making images appear smoother, and a reduced brightness, which is not a concern for the displays in VR headsets. Continue reading Nvidia Designs New Pixel-Dense LCD Panels for VR Headsets

CE Manufacturers Concerned Over Lack of Global 4K Standards

Journalist and ETCentric community member Adrian Pennington published a story last week regarding the need for global UHD standards, which included comments by Pixel Power CTO Nick Wright. “The staggered introduction of Ultra HD 4K production, distribution and display equipment risks fragmenting the market, adding unnecessary cost and yet again ending any chance of fielding a single, worldwide television standard,” writes Adrian. “The issue is causing concern among many manufacturers.” Continue reading CE Manufacturers Concerned Over Lack of Global 4K Standards

Changing the Way We Game: Virtual Reality with Oculus Rift

The focal point of the virtual reality renaissance, the Oculus Rift, is edging closer to its consumer release. The company was at the 2014 CES showing off the latest update to its ever-improving 3D head-mounted display with a prototype codenamed Crystal Cove. The new device improves the frame rate and image persistence of its two screens to reduce motion blur. ETC was on-hand to test out the latest VR experience and talk to the company’s young founder, Palmer Luckey. Continue reading Changing the Way We Game: Virtual Reality with Oculus Rift

Comcast Unveils Plans to Produce Winter Olympics in Ultra HD

Some of the 2014 Winter Olympic Games will be recorded in Ultra HD according to Tony Werner, Comcast’s chief technology officer. The cable company will integrate a new app in Samsung’s 4K TVs to allow for on-demand streaming of the games broadcast from Sochi. Part of the motivation to record in UHD is to “stimulate the imagination” of viewers to see what 4K can do for sports, Werner explained at a CES panel discussion on UHD content. Continue reading Comcast Unveils Plans to Produce Winter Olympics in Ultra HD

Dolby Expected to Demo High Dynamic Range Tech in Las Vegas

A recent tech demonstration at Dolby’s offices in Burbank, California revealed the company’s new high dynamic range TV imaging technology that is said to beat UHD TV in terms of quality. The demo showed off 1080p HD with rich, clear color and “better pixels,” rather than just more pixels. Dolby will reveal the name for the technology at CES in Las Vegas next week, and execs are saying it is not only better than 4K, but less expensive to produce as well. Continue reading Dolby Expected to Demo High Dynamic Range Tech in Las Vegas

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