On Wednesday the tech and audiovisual media community hyperventilated over Sharp’s announcement that it would begin selling an 8K TV screen next month.
Japan’s AVwatch broke the news, with its experts saying that it would be useful for things like keyhole surgery ... and not just your home viewing pleasure.
But before you go out and blow ¥16m (around £85,000) you might want to consider what you will be watching. The short answer is: arty clips of nature, and not much else.
At the moment nobody is making serious 8K content. In June, a two minute film called Ghost Towns was uploaded to YouTube. A handful of other “proof of concept” clips have followed, almost all being time-lapse shots of nature.
Sharp’s 85-inch screen boasts 7680 x 4320 pixels, and will go on sale to Japanese business customers on 31 October and local broadcaster NHK is likely to be front of the queue. After a test run with some World Cup games, the broadcaster wants to present an 8K showcase for the Tokyo Summer Olympics.
According to AVwatch, real 8K programming isn’t likely to start before 2020 at the earliest. So if high definition gallbladder surgery is your cup of tea, woo hoo ... if you want to watch James Bond, erm, just forget it for now. ®