back to article UHD everywhere ... but it's not quite ready to drink, yet

The annual gathering of the broadcast clans takes place in Amsterdam each September. At this year's International Broadcasting Convention, just as at IFA a week before there was UHD everywhere. But here, the focus is on production and distribution, not watching. While 4K – and the HEVC codec – are undoubtedly everywhere, there …

  1. Ru'

    "...with web sites that can easily take in the less savvy consumer who assumes that the box they get with their first year's “internet TV” subscription is legit..."

    Is it less savvy to have access to all of that at a price better than the sat/cable operators? I don't use it myself, but everyone I know who does is well aware it may be slightly less than legal...

    1. Nigel Whitfield.

      There are, on some of the sites, give-aways in the descriptions and the way things are worded that would sound alarms for people reasonably well acquainted with the intricacies of the industry, but will pass many people by.

      That's what I'm getting at - not a judgement about the price, but the fact that many people will unaware that what they're getting is not legit.

      As part of a presentation on the Irdeto stand, they showed visitors five websites, each offering IPTV services, and asked people to guess if it was a legit service or a pirate one. I won a sheriff hat (I'll spare you the pictures) for getting five out of five - but only four people managed that day.

      These things can look very plausible and, where a few years back the UI on the boxes (often low cost Android streamers) would have been decidedly on the shonky side, that too is much more impressive now.

  2. Terje

    I love how piracy allways seems to be promoted as the biggest of evils that need to be stopped at any cost. My not so humble gut feeling is that the amount of lost revenue from that kind of service is overall very low, since most of the people using them would never cough up for all the channels anyway given that they were even available...

    And since this niche crime needs to be stopped at any cost that will lead to higher costs and more hassles for the paying user.

    1. Nigel Whitfield.

      I don't think I've assigned it any particular level of evil - it was an interesting part of the experience because it shows just how much this area has been affected by changes in technology. You're right in that in many cases, people might not fork over cash for the channels, or might not be in a place where they could do, even if they wanted. Sky is never, for instance, going to be retailing Sky Sports 1 anywhere other than in the UK, because they don't have the rights.

      But people are spending the cash on some of these boxes, so they're clearly willing to pay for content, and in some cases don't realise it's not legit. Perhaps in some ways, the challenge that broadcasters and rights owners have there is not really the technical one of stopping piracy, but rather the issue of trying to come up with a more sensible way of handling rights, so that people can get what they want, where they want it, at a reasonable price.

      Some of the boxes I saw had over a hundred sports channels from around the world, because if you're knocking up a box like that, why not? You aren't paying for the content, after all. However, I would suspect that many of the people who buy such a box probably only want a few specific channels - for say Premier League, or Nascar, or Ice Hockey, depending on their tastes.

      1. Terje

        I hope my comment didn't come around sounding as I was racking down on your excelent article. My comment was directed motly at the industry/content distributors /creators who allways seems to count every pirated copy of anything as a lost sale while in reality most of them would never have been sold at all, and the knee jerk reaction of heavier and heavier drm solutions.

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2020