Yesterday we posted a report from The Australian, who published a claim from Samsung that Blu-ray 4K would be available around the end of the year. Today, The Hollywood Reporter confirmed it with the Blu-ray Disc association. The DECE, who administrates UltraViolet, was right behind them. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the Blu-ray Disc Association has approved the creation of the format extension, and they plan to have their blueprint (no pun intended) by the end of the year with studios like Sony, Disney , and Fox actively participating. They hope to reach a final spec by the end of the year, which means that we could see the first players at next year’s CES.
Not to be left out in the cold, the DECE went into detail about their future plans for 4K Ultraviolet streaming:
“4K (Ultra HD) is on our roadmap, and this will need to be a standard since it needs to work on a variety of devices and platforms,” DECE general manager Mark Teitell told The Hollywood Reporter. “We’re also looking at high dynamic range, color space and frame rate. It’s likely to be a combination of those attributes that will represent the next generation. We are looking at what we need to do and take the best combination.”
Asked if DECE could end up adopting a proposed system such as Dolby Vision, he responded, “We don’t adopt things that are propriety, but it may well be a spec that Dolby Vision meets.”
I would guess that not a lot is going to go into actually changing how Blu-ray operates for this 4K extension, and that most of the effort is going into what resolutions, the color depth, bit rates, audio formats, and frame rates that BD4K will support. Things like BD-Java will likely not change, but if anything is likely to be expanded, it will be ease of integration with second screens like phones and tablets. Personally, I’d be looking at some future-proofing and making sure that the spec has room for 4K 3D up to 60fps, which is how James Cameron plans on shooting Avatar 2 and 3. Given how many 120hz MotionFlow sets that Avatar was responsible for, the porn factor with that kind of color depth could do the same for 4K. Couple that with the hooks for potential future home applications of Dolby Atmos and the like, and enthusiasts should feel safe in making a purchase.