4K was touted as the next big step in television, but as we all know technology moves at breakneck pace and 4K is already becoming old news, so what is next for television? Let’s take a brief look at some of the latest TV technology that is leaving 4K in the dust.
Initially, the cost of 4K televisions made it cost prohibitive to own one, but now the prices of these televisions are beginning to fall steadily despite the fact that there still is not a great deal of 4K content available to watch. The main reason for this price drop is that TV manufacturers are moving on to the next big thing.
One of the frontrunners at the moment in terms of TV technology is OLED or ‘Organic Light-Emitting Diode. At the moment OLED is offering some of the clearest television pictures around at the moment. It is becoming increasingly popular not just for TV, but also phone and camera screens because it not only offers superior picture quality – it also boasts reduced power consumption and faster response times compared to traditional LED. At the moment, the only manufacturer who is producing OLED television screens is LG. While they are still pretty expensive, LG’s OLED screens are free of blurring and offer absolute black thanks to individually controlled self-lighting pixels. For the time being at least, OLED is the one to watch!
Samsung have launched their own format in order to compete with LG and their OLED. It is called SUHD. There is no word yet on what the S stands for, Samsung have bandied about words like Super Premium and Sumptuous, but UHD is of course Ultra High Definition. The important thing is that SUHD is a step up from 4K. The technology uses quantum dots to provide superior picture quality than 4K (or UHD) while still being compliant with the 4K format standards.
Another of the latests developments in television is HDR or High Dynamic Range. Several TV manufacturers are beginning to implement this new technology which places most of its focus on picture contrast when improving picture quality. HDR promises to improve picture contrast by producing true blacks and brighter whites. In addition to manufacturers including Samsung, Sony, Phillips, LG and Panasonic working with HDR there has also been talk of Netflix and Dolby working to produce HDR content which is great news for cord cutters.. This means that we could very well see HDR content become more widely available around the same time as 4K content, or very soon after.
Will Content Be Available?
One of the things that makes TV viewers hesitant about purchasing new TV technology is that they have concerns about whether or not content is going to become available in a timely fashion and also whether or not it is going to be around for the long haul. Remember the whole BluRay versus HD-DVD incident? That is why it is a good idea to discuss future technology with your provider before committing to a contract for your direct tv + internet bundle if you are interested in upgrading to one of these new televisions. That way you can get a better idea of their plans for $K or HDR content.
There is no escaping the fact that technology evolves at unprecedented rates and most of the time our brand new television is out of date by the time it even hits the shelves!