Netflix Producing All of its Original Shows in 4K UHD
by Stephan Jukic – July 10th, 2014
Netflix is one of the biggest content producing supporters of the 4K ultra HD format on the market, so it should come as no surprise that the company has pledged to start shooting, finishing and streaming all of its original series in 4K as of this year.
The option of watching all of its new shows in conventional HD will still be available but for 4K fans who have the right TV or PC display monitor and a decent enough internet connection, 4K is going to expand dramatically.
Currently, Netflix already offers shows such as House of Cards, Breaking Bad and assorted movies in 4K streaming format but their selection up to now has been limited to just these few offerings.
Now however, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings has publically and very strongly announced that all new Netflix original TV show programming will be shot in 4K and transmitted in a compression format that makes it viable even for users whose internet connections are smaller than 15 Mbps.
This is a project being done in partnership with Sony Corporation which, as a manufacturer of a wide assortment of 4K TVs, cameras, projectors and other devices, stands to benefit heavily from the same 4K push that Netflix wants to see grow into full fledged popularity.
Hastings has said that his company is doing its best to make 4K viable for streaming through regular US and worldwide internet connections. And Richard Smith of Netflix has also commented that “We’re excited about the picture quality we’re seeing in Ultra HD 4K, and we’re even more excited that expert reviewers of the first TVs capable of streaming Netflix Ultra HD 4K, including the Samsung UH8550 and UH9000, seem to agree”.
Currently, Netflix recommends that its customers who want 4K streaming have a bandwidth of at least 15 to 20 Mbps for reception of the highest quality 4K experience possible and their 4K stream itself currently tops out at 16 Mbps with the additional 4 being recommended to compensate for signal variability.
Given this existing requirement, the question of how they plan on making their current and future 4K content available to anyone with a connection smaller than 15 Mbps but above 10Mbps remains up in the air.
Netflix has already previously stated that they expect 4K technology to become truly mainstream within about 5 years but their efforts are geared at accelerating this process as much as possible.
Luckily for 4K fans, Netflix isn’t the only major company focusing on expanding 4K transmission and use. Amazon.com, referring to its entertainment arm at Amazon Studios, also pledged to make all of its 2014 shows in native 4K resolution and in the UK, the BBC is working on developing widespread 4K transmission for domestic audiences. Likewise is happening in Japan, where a partnership of major broadcasters and the government itself are developing the infrastructure for nationwide 4K transmission capacity. Even more ambitiously, the Japanese effort is aimed at making even the much more powerful 8K resolution format viable within a decade.
Story by 4k.com