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Higher Dynamic Range (HDR) is key to fully enjoying Ultra HD transmissions. However, few UHD displays can currently manage to resolve HDR with its better picture quality, richer colours, and significantly improved detail in shadows and black and white contrast ratios.
Amazon’s Prime Instant Video service says it will supply HDR-enabled content – initially to US-based subscribers – on content that is shot in HDR.
Currently that means just one ‘Amazon Original’ series, namely Red Oaks. However, it gives Amazon a slight edge over Netflix which is promising HDR programming with its own Marco Polo series now being filmed.
Amazon says that it is working with Hollywood, which is also beginning to trickle out HDR content, and that it sees HDR as being the natural ‘next step’ for UHD-equipped displays. Most manufacturers are now releasing models with either HDR technology on board or are promising software or firmware upgrades later this year. Both Sony and Samsung say that HDR-enabled – and high-end – sets will be in the stores this year.