UHDTV Broadcasts Begin in Korea Six Months Early

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UHD 4kBeating Japan and all other countries to market, South Korea has begun broadcasting five channels of 4K UHD content. While these channels are only available to people who have special cable connections sponsored by LG, these features will expand to the general public once 4K gets a bigger foothold. Via the Korean website ET News:

… the participating five MSOs open their own channels for UHD broadcasts and offer UHD broadcasts to six households in each of the cable TV service areas.

The domestic cable TV industry initially planned to begin pilot UHD broadcasts early next year, but decided to advance the pilot run date by 6 months with a view to commercializing UHD broadcasts at an earlier date. As a result, the commercialization of UHD broadcasts will be advanced from 2015 to 2014.

Korea has some of the fastest internet connections in the civilized world, so handling five channels of 4K shouldn’t have a big impact on their ability to still carry a lot of channels and provide warp-drive internet to everyone. 4K support in the US, however, is still in question. Channels like ESPN are dumping 3D to make room for the new UHD format with the expectation that it’s likely to fair better with audiences, but the elephant in the room remains whether people will buy large enough sets, and sit close enough to them, to see the real difference.

Via:[HighDefDigest] and [ET News]

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  • Alan P

    3D TV might be cool for a select group but UHDTV will be loved by all. It’s truly a game changer.

    • Dennis Burger

      I’m not sure I really agree with that, Alan. Loved by many, perhaps. I have friends who sit ten feet away from 40-inch TVs, and they’re fine with it. Never mind the fact that I tell them they may as well be watching standard-def at that distance, with that screen size.

      If we can get people to sit closer to their televisions, yes, I agree that it has the potential to be a game changer. But at the ten-foot seating distance that many people prefer, it would take an 80-inch display to really deliver the benefits of 4K. And I just don’t see many consumers — certainly not “all” — going to that expense.