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A report from IHS Media & Technology Digest says the content side of the Ultra HD supply chain has been “slow to respond” in providing UHD programming to consumers.
Report author Richard Cooper says that there are some 400 titles available in UHD across various platforms and formats, although the “vast majority” of these have simply been up-scaled to 4K. More than half of these are supplied by just two studios, Paramount and Sony, with Netflix measured as the third-largest global provider of UHD material.
In terms of packaged Blu-ray 4K media, there are barely 30 titles available in UHD.
IHS says that Ultrafix, a US transactional online VoD service, boasts the greatest number of UHD titles (229), but again these are almost all scaled-up versions and – for the most part – less well-known titles.
Indeed, IHS complains – justifiably – that the definition of UHD is itself very broad, and that it is unlikely that most (so-called) UHD TVs can even make the most of the UHD material that is available.
IHS’s conclusion is that unless this situation is resolved then “UHD could, like 3D before it, become just a little-used, high-end feature of large-screen TV sets”.