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Discovery offering 4K UHD content with its Discovery GO app, available in Samsung 4K TVs

by on January 12, 2016
 

Stephan Jukic – January 12, 2016

UPDATE March 13, 2017: Despite our much earlier reporting of these pending content selections in 4K resolution from Discovery GO and its app to Canadian customers for their Samsung 4K TVs, there was never any followup on the matter from the content provider or Samsung Canada. As of this update, Discovery GO is not available on any North American 4K TVs to our knowledge and is not currently supporting 4K video formats either. Efforts to contact Discovery for further clarification will be made again. There is a Discovery Channel app for Samsung TVs but it does not support regular 4K video service in the U.S at this time to our knowledge.

Discovery has been discussing and developing 4K UHD recording and distribution capacity for some time now but the major popular science and history network is finally putting its money where its mouth is so to speak and offering a selection of titles in 4K ultra HD resolution for its OTT streaming service called Discovery GO. The network announced this move at the recently completed Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Nevada in the opening days of January, 2016.

The new content in 4K service is being delivered through a partnership with Samsung Electronics, which has integrated the Discovery GO app into its smart TVs for 2016 and 2015.

4K Ultra HD resolution means pixel dimensions of 3840 across and 2160 high and ultimately offers a far sharper, more detailed level of video quality, comparable to that of an 8.8 megapixel photo.

According to Daniel Casman, a Canadian videographer from Toronto who helped the Canadian telco giant Rogers in their own 4K UHD transition work, “More pixels means more information and more details.”

Of course, creating 4K content and even more importantly, setting up the distribution system for its functionality is a time consuming and often expensive process, with new content having to be shot on professional 4K cameras and older content in film reprocessed by running the film reels through a 4K lens. Furthermore, the distribution process itself is even trickier, requiring a whole new augmentation of network and streaming infrastructure which can handle the much larger data loads of all those extra pixels and other video improvement data like HDR, found in 4K video.

Despite the challenges, OTT and streaming services worldwide are steadily moving into the 4K content landscape and Discovery is only one of many to start feeling the pressure to move in this direction.

Other major players in the 4K content game include Netflix, whose streaming 4K UHD services are arguably the largest in the world in terms of original content. Furthermore, other science-oriented content services like the Smithsonian Network’s SVOD service Smithsonian Earth are also starting to offer selections of 4K content to their subscribers and viewers.

Likewise applies for a growing number of other streaming services which include YouTube, Vimeo, Vudu, Amazon Prime and M-Go to name just a few.

Of course, on the other end of the chain, users themselves also need to make some investments in technology if they want to enjoy 4K movies, shows and other programming. This means having access to a 4K UHD TV with the latest connectivity essentials like HDMI 2.0 and HDCP 2.2 content copy protection as well as the ability to decode the HEVC (H.265 and VP9 4K video compression codecs used for most 4K OTT and transmission content. Furthermore, for access to any streaming web-based 4K UHD content service, sufficient internet connectivity is essential, with the bare minimum for most services being a domestic speed of 15 to 20Mbps.

One of the new Discovery GO 4K series will be "River Monsters"

One of the new Discovery GO 4K series will be “River Monsters”

However, moving back to Discovery GO, the company’s entire catalog of popular science and other shows will not yet be offered in 4K. Instead, the conversion process will be graduated and the current selection of titles for early to mid-2016 release consist of: Close Encounters, River Monsters, High Tech Rednecks, How It’s Made: Dream Cars, Shark, Jade Fever and How Hard Can It Be.

Viewers with Samsung 4K TVs will have the most immediate access to the new 4K service but the inclusion of the Discovery GO app with access to the company’s expanding archive of 4K UHD content will surely follow in other 4K television brands and models.

Story by 4k.com

 

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  • Rick
    January 13, 2016 at 5:48 am

    Will the Discovery Go 4K content for Samsung UHD TVs be available for free or will we havê to login with the Pay TV provider access? If so, when will major providers be added to it?

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      January 13, 2016 at 8:31 pm

      Hello Rick. While we will update this news as new developments come along and also add the option to our listings of 4K content choices in the “Movies” page, we have not yet heard anything from any source to indicate that the content will be for pay access for now. It seems that owners of newer Samsung 4K TVs gain access to the 4K selections for free at least for a trial period. We’re looking further into the details of this however.

      Reply

  • Troy
    January 13, 2016 at 9:56 am

    Typo in the 8th paragraph “they wsnt to enjoy”, should be “want”…other than that this is great news. Discovery was one of the pioneers for bringing 1080p HD to the masses with quality programs.

    Reply

  • Edgar Arroyo
    January 14, 2016 at 7:11 pm

    How am i suppose to get the Discovery GO app on my 2015 Samsung Smart TV model JU6500? I mean, if it wasn’t for this article i wouldn’t know this even exists.

    I bought this TV almost 4 weeks ago and I’m able to get and watch, Netflix, Hulu, M-Go, Cinema Now, PS Now, Ultra Flux and tons of others apps, all without any issues, but I knew I hadn’t seen any Discovery Go app while browsing though the available, otherwise I would have added it, so now after reading this I went to the Smart Hub apps and went one by one after not finding anything with a search and now I’m sure that I don’t have it available.

    A couple of days ago, I did a factory reset on the TV because just recently began having issues with an App that was working since day one and now has problems while trying to play movies from my library, sadly it didn’t fix it but by doing this I can feel sure that there is nothing I skipped in the initial setup process, tonight I even tan just the initial setup and entered a hidden menu where I can change my Region if I want to, I just used it to verify that USA is the selected Region, it was and still is, beige the reason all the other exclusive USA apps are working.

    So what am I missing here, why can’t I even find results of this issue on Google, how is this possible, am I the only one? I wrote to Samsung support, but by experience I know I’ll get better results via other forums or places like this, Thanks in advance.

    Reply

    • Edgar Arroyo
      January 14, 2016 at 7:36 pm

      A follow up to my previous long post, after contacting Samsung Support via chat now I’m now confused than ever, they simply said that they don’t have any Discovery Channel or Go app, and when I replied to that with a link to this article, then he said that if it existed should appears on my Smart Hub.

      Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      January 15, 2016 at 12:15 pm

      Hello Edgar, The details surrounding the Discovery GO app are oddly scarce at the moment and we’re looking into the issue. However, at least on the Samsung U.S site, a Discovery Channel app listed as an option for the Smart Hub on newer Samsung smart TVs. http://support-us.samsung.com/spsn/detail.jsp?ctg_id=201&sub_ctg_id=&live_id=2&view_id=1&video_id=2149535776001

      Quite likely the content is not available in 4K yet and our source for this news piece may have gotten the name of the app mixed up. We’re investigating further and will make the necessary corrections.

      Reply

      • Stephen
        Stephen
        January 15, 2016 at 12:18 pm

        To clarify still further from new research, it seems that the “Discovery GO” app under that name is indeed coming with 4K content in 2016, soon but at least the app’s name on Samsung 4K TVs is the one being used with Canadian smart TVs from the manufacturer.

        Reply

        • Marty Whalen
          March 10, 2017 at 1:23 pm

          It’s now 3/17 and your still full of shit!

          Reply

          • Stephen
            Stephen
            March 13, 2017 at 5:36 pm

            Hello Marty, we were reporting what we had heard to be the case at the time of this very old news piece from January of 2016, However, since Discovery Go hasn’t yet offered 4K content through its app or to Samsung 4K TVs, we will be updating this post to reflect that. The 4K content offerings for Samsung TVs were also reportedly slated for Canadian viewers based on what we’ve heard. I don’t believe myself to be quite so full of shit as you say but I do appreciate your calling my attention to this post and it’s being edited to reflect the current situation.


  • David J Tarshis
    January 25, 2017 at 11:11 am

    I bought my Samsung smart 4K TV last year, and after reading this article I was really exited to go home and fire up the Discovery GO app. To my dismay, it’s not listed in my app channel. I called Samsung and was told if it’s not listed, it’s not compatible. What a heart breaker. The show I was wanting to watch is Frontier. In the Wiki it even states that is available for broadcast on Samsung smart 4K tv’s with the Discovery GO app. It’s been a year since you wrote the article. I’m curious if you have come across any more news about which Samsung smart 4K TV’s that it’s compatible with. I even call the store I bought the TV from and they never heard of any Discovery app for Samsung TV’s. Curious minds want to know…..what’s going on?

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      January 30, 2017 at 7:15 pm

      Hello David, apparently, the app is available only to Certain Samsung Tizen 4K UHD TVs sold in Canada from what we can tell. Discovery’s U.S website for Discovery GO makes no mention of availability in TVs as a downloadable app for the TVs themselves, stating that “The Discovery GO app is available for iOS and Android and will work with most iOS and smart phones and tablets; you also can watch on your computer at DiscoveryGO.com.”

      Reply

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