With any new technology standards or formats, there’s always a trial stage whereby an assessment is made as to whether moving towards it is a viable or necessary pursuit. While 3DTV continues to struggle through lack of content and general interest, 4K looks to be taking strides as the next de facto quality level for our viewing pleasure, and the Blu-ray Disc Association’s decision to announce 4K Blu-ray discs suggests that this will be the natural next step.
Popular movie streaming service Netflix has already announced 4K UHD (Ultra High-Definition) support for the near future, and with both of the major new consoles also offering varying degrees of 4K support, the wheels have been in motion for quite a while.
Blu-ray discs, as well as DVDs, still remain a popular way of consuming media, even in this day and age of streamed content. The decision to announce 4K Blu-ray discs not only makes sense because of the general interest in buying physical media in spite of the alternatives, but will also allow those with less able Internet connections to enjoy the pinnacle of clarity in both audio and vision when watching their favorite movies or TV shows.
1080p, for some, remains difficult to stream, and even though connections are always being updated and improved, there’s certainly a market for improved Blu-ray discs for the foreseeable future.
Just because the announcement has been made, though, this doesn’t necessarily mean we’ll be seeing UHD Blu-ray discs in stores any time soon. After all, even though many folks still purchase DVDs and BDs from stores, many retail outlets have naturally suffered at the hands of the Internet, and with plenty of legalese between today and that eventual first UHD Blu-ray, your Netflixes and others will be the best way to watch 4K video.
One suspects, however, that after UHD Blu-ray, we’re unlikely to see anything else by way of major physical formats. The World Wide Web is simply too convenient for both retailer and consumer to continue wasting time and resources making these discs, and as connection speeds are upgraded and improved, the Blu-rays – as well as those retailing them – will soon be phased out.
But what do you think, do you think there’s still room for physical media in our lives? Or digital streaming should be the bog standard going forward?