Saturday, January 22

4K is coming to DStv and Showmax Pro next year


MultiChoice Group is working to release 4K content and may be ready to show it off in time for the 2022 Soccer World Cup, which kicks off on November 21 next year.

That’s the word from MultiChoice Connected Video COO Barry Dubovsky, who spoke to TechCentral on Thursday after the group’s annual Showcase event.

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Dubovsky, who joined Australian telecom operator Telstra’s MultiChoice in 2018, took up his current role in August this year, said the group is working hard to get 4K broadcasts and broadcasts ready in time for the World Cup. of FIFA in Qatar. However, he said he still cannot make any promises that he will be ready in time for the football showcase, which will air on both DStv and Showmax Pro, the top-tier Showmax streaming tier that includes sporting events on I live from the sister company. SuperSport.

Going to 4K for the World Cup would be a significant advance in quality. MultiChoice’s streaming DStv product currently maxes out at 1080p resolution, while Showmax maxes out at 720p. Your satellite product broadcasts with a resolution of up to 1080i. Both 1080p and 1080i offer a resolution of 1920 × 1080 pixels, or roughly 2.1 million pixels, while 4K content is 3840 × 2160 pixels, for a massive 8.3 million pixel count.

While MultiChoice is excited about the move to 4K content, Dubovsky emphasized in the interview that the company’s priority remains minimizing data costs for customers, “to make sure the content is accessible to everyone.”

“We want to make sure that the quality of the broadcast is sufficient, so that people don’t have a terrible experience and start complaining and walk away. You have to understand the basics well, that’s the ticket to play, ”said Dubovsky.

‘A great result’

“However, in the future, we are seeing more and more content being accessed through smart televisions and on larger screens, so we need to be where our customers are. With that in mind, 4K and 1080p, everything is absolutely on the agenda.

“4K, heading into the World Cup … It’s not a promise, but we want to make sure we can get the best possible experience before that flagship event.”

When asked for clarity, and if that means that viewers can expect to enjoy the World Cup in 4K, Dubovsky said: “That would be a great result.”

However, moving to 4K increases the complexity of the required infrastructure, he said. “It is the complexity around the infrastructure, it is the provision of resources, it is the operational management, a lot of support is required. But it’s something the company is taking very seriously because we need to continually evolve the viewing experience. ”

There are many moments of truth that come with the World Cup, where we expect a significant influx of users to the platform.

MultiChoice’s new set-top box set-top box, the Explora Ultra launched last year, is now 4K ready and subscribers can access 4K content via bundled Netflix and Amazon Prime Video apps.

When asked if their own 4K content would be available to all MultiChoice customers, including those using Explora Ultra, Dubovsky said: “Ultimately, it is a similar proposition in terms of optimizing the viewing experience for customers. I don’t want to give a generic answer here, but absolutely, it is a priority. We cannot lag behind the market in this space. But we have immediate priorities to ensure that the mass market and the mid-market can consume our content as a starting point. We can spread love initially and then progressively move towards the new world. ”

Even without 4K, hosting an event like the FIFA World Cup on a streaming platform like Showmax Pro is a daunting task, Dubovsky said.

“There will be a lot of pressure on our engineers to ensure stability and that the service does not fail. There are many moments of truth that lie ahead with the World Cup, where we expect a significant influx of users to the platform. We need to make sure we don’t disappoint them. ”

Duncan McLeod is an editor at TechCentral, where this article was first published. here.

© 2021 NewsCentral Media


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