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Comcast to launch 4K-capable set-top box this year, another enabling HDR in 2016

By Shawn Knight
May 6, 2015
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  1. comcast set-top box 4k 4k tv 4k cable box

    The price of 4K ultra high-definition (UHD) televisions has come down significantly over the past year or so but even still, many are finding it hard to justify purchasing a 4K set due to the simple fact that there isn’t much UHD content available yet.

    Comcast already streams a selection of 4K content to some Samsung televisions through its Xfinity in UHD app. Later this year, the cable provider will be expanding the reach of its catalog with its first 4K-enabled set-top box.

    The Xi4 will serve as the latest addition to Comcast’s Xfinity X1 platform. In its press release, the company said customers will be able to enjoy unlimited virtual 4K linear channels by creating personalized playlists from the Xfinity in UHD library.

    comcast set-top box 4k 4k tv 4k cable box

    Essentially, what this means is that Xi4 box users will be able to access the content that Samsung TV owners already get through the Xfinity in UHD app and arrange it in a playlist so it feels like a real channel. Comcast said it will add hundreds of titles to its catalog, many of which will be content originally screened in IMAX theaters (I.e., lots of documentaries). It’s certainly a step in the right direction but it doesn’t mean live 4K content is coming anytime soon.

    Only a handful of outfits are providing 4K content and none of them are broadcast networks. In the meantime, we can turn to sources like Amazon and Netflix that provide some of their original content in UHD.

    The latest buzzword surrounding television is HDR, or high dynamic range, and Comcast is already jumping on that bandwagon, too. The provider said it plans to launch a new HDR-enabled set-top box known as the Xi5 sometime in 2016 that'll provide increased color, contrast and brightness.

    Lead image via The Verge

    Permalink to story.

     
  2. TomSEA

    TomSEA TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,559   +598

    Until there's content that people actually want to watch (not documentaries), then there's no point. You'll pay extra for a box which will provide 4k viewing which you'll only use for 3 minutes to show off for friends.
     
    Evernessince likes this.
  3. yRaz

    yRaz TS Evangelist Posts: 1,906   +954

    You would hate documentaries
     
  4. davislane1

    davislane1 TS Evangelist Posts: 3,559   +2,364

    Unless there are people who want to watch documentaries. Then there is a point.
     
  5. Camikazi

    Camikazi TS Maniac Posts: 817   +231

    Comcast will just find a way to add this to the bundle and charge $30 a month after the first 12 months. Comcast will make their money off of this (I hate them).
     
  6. TomSEA

    TomSEA TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,559   +598

    I don't hate documentaries, in fact watch them all the time on the National Geographic, History and AHC channels. But I'm not going to invest in a new 4k TV, then pay for a box and added expenses to watch them.
     
  7. yRaz

    yRaz TS Evangelist Posts: 1,906   +954

    well that's great because I don't know of a 4k TV that doesn't come with access to you tube, hulu and Netflix, the only real sources of 4k content out there.

    But, honestly, History and AHC? I hate to inform you, but what you've been watching can hardly be called a documentary
     
  8. Lionvibez

    Lionvibez TS Evangelist Posts: 1,103   +346

    Still not enough content.

    Most networks still only broadcast 720p/1080i and only a few doing 1080p.

    I'll stick to my 1080p plasma.

    If the content situation changes in the next 2-3 years maybe I'll reconsider until then no thanks.
     
  9. TrueBooleanFals

    TrueBooleanFals TS Member Posts: 76   +12

    Dish Network has been developing a 4k Joey for the Hopper system for a time now. As there is not even 1080p content out there other than OTA, 4k will take some time to get it to run native with the current infrastructure.
     
  10. When the heck are they coming out with that 1gbps with "unlimited" data cap. I'm willing to give them a chance once I see what that's all about
     

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