By Rick Clucas, V-Nova
EETimes (October 28, 2021)
Ever since regular TV broadcasting began by the BBC from my home town London on 26th August 1936, the broadcast industry and the technology ecosystem around it has been continually striving to improve it and make it look better. However, in recent years we have failed to upgrade traditional terrestrial broadcasting to ultra-high definition (UHD), with the consequence that most people who have been buying UHD TVs have never watched any actual UHD TV content on them!
The main reason UHD TVs have been a great success for TV manufacturers is because they have the opportunity to sell premium products that for the same screen size actually cost them less to manufacture than a full HD panel. This is because the display production yield for UHD is greater than full HD due to there being four times as many pixels for the same screen size, meaning the allowed percentage of non-defective pixels is much easier to meet.
Sadly, as of 2021 UHD has remained impractical for broadcasters, since current video codecs just consume too much precious spectrum. In particular, it doesn’t make economic sense to broadcast UHD, since
- the bandwidth requirements of UHD channels are too high, and
- in addition, they would still have to separately broadcast a full HD version for the large number of viewers who don’t have a UHD TV.
Another dimension is that the lack of UHD content has made it easier for new OTT services to enter the market with higher-quality content, putting further pressure on traditional broadcasters’ revenue streams.
Click here to read more ...