Andrew Neil: ‘UHD will strengthen traditional TV’

Broadcaster and commentator Andrew Neil has predicted that the advent of 4K viewing will give mainstream broadcast TV “a new lease of life”.

Neil made his comments in a keynote address at the SES Satellite Monitor in London where the satellite operator revealed its reach figures for 2014.

Suggesting that moving forward, Internet and satellite-delivered programmes would become increasingly dominant, he said that broadcast TV would nevertheless be strengthened by Ultra-HD. “4K will give it a new lease of life,” he said. “It will have a huge impact,” he added, suggesting that what is currently accepted as ‘HD’ programming “isn’t really HD at all”.

According to Neil, you only have to see 4K to realise the difference. “At [retail store] Dixons, people are mesmerised,” he recounted, noting that the cost of sets was going down. “It’ll be as big as the rise of Sky and the arrival of colour TV,” he declared.

“There will be a huge cost to industry and consumers,” he admitted, but consumers have done it before,” he argued, referring to the adoption of large-screen HD sets.

“I’ve already got a set,” he advised. “I’m just waiting for the programming; that’s the challenge [for industry],” he concluded.

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