- 1 Why do I want 4K?
- 2 4K Streaming Services
- 3 Streaming devices & 4K content
- 4 Conclusion: 4K content
While most major broadcasters haven’t fully rolled out their plans for 4K Ultra High definition content yet, there’s actually plenty of 4K content thanks to the rise of streaming services.
Netflix, Amazon Prime Video/ Fire TV, YouTube and many more offer various possibilities to access 4K content. Watching 4K TV became a simple thing to do.
Why do I want 4K?
First of all here’s a short introduction on how TV resolution works as well as a little explanation on what’s the difference between 4K and standard HD TVs. TV resolution results out of the number of available pixels on a TV screen. Before HD broadcasting standard had a resolution of 720 x 576 pixels. Followed by HD with a minimum resolution of 720p HD, meaning 1280 x720 pixels, increased to 1080p HD, meaning 1920 x 1080 pixels.
A major increase of high definition again came up with the invention of 4K and a resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels, which is eight times the resolution of SD (standard definition) and four times HD. This massive leap means more detail, impressive colors and highly more intensive experiences with images coming extremely close to reality! There’s no way you wouldn’t want to enjoy 4K. The incredible resolution, especially on large TVs, falling prices of HD TVs as well as more available 4K content are bringing Ultra HD into your living room.
4K Streaming Services
There’s an enjoyable amount of streaming services available in the US (UK) that enable 4K content to watch from the moment on. All you need is a TV which displays 4K pictures.
Beautiful images, impressive colors and improved technology are great but no big matter if there’s nothing to watch. Some 4K TVs may offer the opportunity to connect directly to the content, but in most cases you’ll need to use a streaming device or service. Many streaming services offer access to 4K content like Netflix, Amazon Prime and more. (HDTV Service)
$13.99/£8.99 per month
In order to enjoy 4K content on Netflix there are a few things to keep in mind.
- You’ll need a compatible device as well as a suitable 4K TV
- A decent Internet connection (should be above 16mbps, while Netflix recommends 25mbps) is necessary
- 4k streaming is only available with the right package of Netflix
- A title available in 4K needs to be picked
Amazon Prime Video
$12.99/£7.00 per month
Next to Netflix Amazone offers an other giant streaming opportunity with 4K content through their Prime Instant Video platform without any extra costs.
- 4K is now accessible on TV’s of every TV manufacture
- 4K content available from now on
- compatible TV is required
- You’ll have to pick a 4K available title
Free; $10.00/£11.99 per month for YouTube Premium
Without any extra costs YouTube offers a way to watch 4K content. While there’s not much feature-length content in 4K HD on YouTube, there are a lot of free videos.
- No extra costs for 4K content
- Watch any content on your Smart 4K HDTV and you’ll have a decent amount of demos and short videos or documentaries which will look almost like reality
Sony’s Ultra 4K
- Huge library of 4K HD titles
- Big selection of Sony Pictures content
- Only available to Sony 4K Ultra HD TV
- $30.00 per purchase
Apple iTunes is now available in 4K and High Dynamic Range - image/video with more dynamic range (contrast range), offering the big advantage to automatically upgrade existing HD content purchase on compatible devices.
- To access 4K content, simply look for 4K or High Dynamic Range - image/video with more dynamic range (contrast range) as well as the Dynamic HDR-format with a color depth of up to 12 Bits and Mastering of up to 10,000 Nits (Dolby’ proprietary High Dynamic Range - image/video with more dynamic range (contrast range) format) symbols next to titles
- Make sure your Apple TV supports 4K. (You’ll need a specific model called Apple TV 4K)
- Available titles are to purchase or to rent
- 4K versions of titles cost the same as the HD version (much cheaper than most other services)
4K broadcasting TV- Channels
-the only mainstream channel broadcasting 4K in the UK is BT Sport Ultra HD
-BBC already had some trials on streaming 4K content offering more in the future.
Originally known by the name M-Go, Fandango purchased and rebranded the company. Currently called FandangoNow, the platform provides a decent range of UHD films for purchase and rental.
- Big advantage: FandangoNow offers a list on its website which shows the availability of 4K or HD movies
- Rentals prices start from $5 which varies by title, while purchased movies are between $20 to $25
Vudu is a great movie rental and downloading service providing 4K content. Starting with rentals from about $10 and purchases from $20 to $30 Vudu is expanding 4K content.
- The recommended Inernet speed is 10 to 11 Mbps or higher
- Compatible with Vizio, Roku, LG 4K TVs as well as 4K-enabled Roku devices or Nvidia Shield TV devices paired with a compatible 4K Ultra HD TV and selected 4K TVs
Many hours of 4K Ultra HD content including documentaries, concerts and music acts as well as comedy and drama, is available with Ultraflix. The huge library of 4K streaming content offers entertainment for everyone. All the rental products are available for 48-hours.
- Recommended minimum downloadspeed of 10 Mbps or higher
- App available on selected Samsung, Amazone Fire TV or Nvidia Shield TV streaming boxes
- Costs are between $1 to $10 per rental
Sony’s video on demand service provides purchase and rental for about 200 movies and TV shows. Prices are $2 for TV episode rentals, $8 per movie for a 24-hour rental and $15 to $35 for purchases
Compatibility with: Sony Ultra HD TV or 4K Ultra HD TV with HDCP 2.2 copyright protection and a PlayStation 4 Pro (other Sony devices) or Sony FMP-X10 4K Ultra HD media player
Of course Google offers its own 4K streaming opportunities Chromecast Ultra and the Google Play store provide a huge selection of 4K movies available for rental or purchase. Hence any 4K capable device that supports Google Play can access the movies via the Google Play App.
- $5 rentals and $20 to $30 for purchase
- Required internet connection is 20 Mbps or higher
- 4K streaming supported by Chromecast Ultra, Nvidia Shield, 4K capable Roku model or other Google devices connected to a 4K TV
Trough 2018 World Cup matches FuboTV became the first live TV streaming service programming in 4K with High Dynamic Range - image/video with more dynamic range (contrast range). NCAA football games became next to be shown in 4K, while FuboTV wants to provide not only sports but also entertainment programming in 4K soon.
Streaming devices & 4K content
4K Blu-ray Disc and Players
- If you’re looking for extremely high quality the LG BPM25 Blu-Ray Disc Player may be a good solution: higher price but therefore the highest quality.
- Big source of 4K content offering the very best picture quality
- 4K disk-spinners, such as Sony UBPX800 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc Player are a good choice for everyone
Play Station 4 Pro
- Newest version of the PlayStation
- Offers access to Sony’s 4K HD content
- You can purchase or download any movie and other content
- Brings spectacular graphics to life
Xbox One S/X
Xbox One S
The Xbox One S as well as Xbox One X offer beside from many gaming advantages a good opportunity to access 4K streaming providing entertainment for everyone. The Xbox is a good alternative to any 4K BluRay player.
Xbox One X
- Xbox One X seems to be the major gaming console offering gaming fun and 4K experiences
- Spectacular graphics, breathtaking colors in UHD
Amazon Fire 4K Fire TV
Since 2015 there’s the 2nd generation of Amazon Fire TV supporting 4K UHD. Offering 4K content streamed via the internet to high definition TVs.
- There are two forms of devices:
- Fire TV: a set top box
- Fire TV Stick: cut-down version shaped as an HDMI plug-in stick
Besides of being a handy gaming device Nvidia Shield is a great android based 4K streaming opportunity. Netflix, You Tube, Google Play Movies, as well as home streaming apps and the possibility to plug in headphones into the Shield remote offer an intense TV experience.
Last but not least Roku Ultra is an other 4K media player with attached remote. Next to the usual opportunity to enjoy 4K content offering selections of 4K entertainment including movies, TV shows, and sports the Roku Ultra offers specials like a voice search or a lost remote finder. The Ultra remote comes with access to Netflix, Hulu, Sling and Showtime, while there is a huge selection of many more streaming platforms accessible through the device.
Conclusion: 4K content
4K TV is the best way to enjoy movies and TV shows on the highest level. Whether you want to go with Netflix, Fire TV or any other Streaming Service is up to you. Check their current content and offers to decide which service fits you the most. The same way you should proof if or which compatible device is going to join your living room. Make sure the internet connection is on a decent level (should be around 16mbps or higher) and all other streaming requirements are available with your 4K TV. It is individual and up to you which way you’re going to enjoy 4K content. Sure thing is no matter which streaming service you’re going for with their 4K offer you’ll be going to have an unforgettable cinema experience straight from your living room.
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