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.”

“It feels to us that there’s quite a scramble to create some kind of 4K service in terms of delivery,” said Wright, CTO and co-founder of broadcast graphics systems vendor Pixel Power.

“Because CE manufacturers can make cheap 4K displays and consumer grade cameras and optics, the momentum is gathering,” he noted. “But the needs of the wider industry are not necessarily represented by that sentiment; there’s an element of the tail wagging the dog. If the industry doesn’t make a big enough step between whatever comes next and the HD we have now, consumers won’t see a compelling difference and won’t buy.”

Adrian writes for TVBEurope: “Wright also believes there’s a significant threat that if standardization lags behind the first 4K products then ‘the entire industry ends up paying for the fragmentation that results for a very long time — just like the 720p/1080i split all over again.'”

“Nobody knows what 4K is yet: the standards aren’t agreed; we don’t know what people are going to adopt; we don’t know about the codecs, frame rate or audio,” Wright added. “Are we missing an opportunity here to have a single, worldwide television standard again as this would be a major driver to reduce costs and perhaps more importantly reduce any confusion that could impact on consumer take up.”