Industry majors form UHD Alliance
January 6, 2015
By Colin Mann
Leading Hollywood studios, consumer electronics brands, content distributors, post-production and technology companies have combined to launch the UHD (Ultra High Definition) Alliance – a new coalition of companies united to set the bar for next generation video entertainment by establishing new standards to support innovation in video technologies including 4K and higher resolutions, high dynamic range, wider colour gamut and immersive 3D audio.
The UHD Alliance was created with the consumer in mind; it provides information on premium Ultra-HD content and devices to deliver best-in-class home entertainment. The Alliance is also focused on helping consumers benefit from a seamless, integrated and high-quality Ultra-HD ecosystem from end-to-end. Premium Ultra-HD content and devices will be clearly identified so consumers can easily recognise them in-store.
The Alliance was formed by global companies including DirecTV, Dolby, LG Electronics Inc., Netflix, Panasonic Corporation, Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., Sharp Corporation, Sony Visual Product Inc., Technicolor, The Walt Disney Studios, Twentieth Century Fox and Warner Bros. Entertainment.
“As the UHD ecosystem continues to evolve, we are strengthening our commitment to high-quality UHD content and devices,” said Hyunsuk Kim, President, Visual Display Business at Samsung Electronics. “The Alliance will encourage the development of high-quality UHD content while distinguishing TVs that provide the most premium UHD viewing experience.”
“The innovative advancements and quality improvements with TVs are evolving rapidly, as seen throughout CES,” said Mike Dunn, President, Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment. “The UHD Alliance will benefit consumers by identifying products and content that will give the true UHD experience.”
“These technologies allow us to utilise a much broader palette to tell our stories while providing viewers with true-to-life colours, superior contrast and premium picture quality,” said Ron Sanders, President, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment. “Working with a wide industry consortium is the best way to deliver these experiences within premium entertainment.”
The UHD Alliance aims to ensure that all of the links in the chain – from the production, distribution and consumption of content to the playback capability of devices – meet the identified premium quality standards, whilst embracing standards that are open and allow flexibility in the market yet give consumers confidence that they can watch the content they want on their devices. In the coming months, the group will convene to outline a technology roadmap for the rapid evolution of UHD technology, worldwide.
The British entertainment industry’s body for developing best practice in Ultra HD has congratulated the US entertainment and technology industry on the formation of the UHD Alliance.
The UK UHD Forum has brought together broadcasters, TV platforms, TV manufacturers and other stakeholders since 2013 as part of the DTG.
Richard Lindsay-Davies, CEO of the DTG, said: “The DTG’s UK UHD Forum has brought together stakeholders in the Ultra HD ecosystem since 2013. We welcome the formation of the UHD Alliance and we look forward to engaging with them to mutually develop standards for best practice in the 4K arena alongside some of the world’s greatest technology and entertainment companies.”
The UK UHD Forum is currently involved in a series of 4K Plugfests to determine the performance and interoperability of 4K TVs and home cinema equipment with 4K set-top boxes under development for UK services.