DStv could go 4K next year

MultiChoice plans to bring 4K content to DStv and Showmax Pro customers as early as November next year, a spokesperson for the company has confirmed.

“MultiChoice is investigating higher resolution options across its streaming products, but there are no dates to confirm at this stage,” the spokesperson told MyBroadband.

MultiChoice’s DStv streaming service currently streams at a maximum resolution of 1080p, while Showmax tops out at 720p.

According to a TechCentral report, MultiChoice Connected Video chief operating officer Barry Dubovsky said the broadcaster aims to showcase 4K content by the start of the 2022 soccer World Cup.

“4K, heading into the World Cup… It’s not a promise, but we want to ensure we can get the experience as good as it possibly can be ahead of that flagship event,” TechCentral quoted Dubovsky as saying.

While it is working on 4K content, MultiChoice emphasised its priority to minimise data costs for its customers.

“The cost of data is still a major barrier across Africa, so our tech focus remains on reducing data consumption,” the spokesperson told MyBroadband.

This is not the first time MultiChoice has delved into 4K resolution streaming, having conducted a test in 2018 that saw the final four matches of the FIFA World Cup stream in 2160p resolution at 50 frames per second.

The test made the South African broadcaster the first in Africa to live stream in 4K resolution.

Muhammad Khan, then-CTO of MultiChoice Connected Video, explained that the broadcaster conducted the test to better understand third-party cloud solutions and their effectiveness when combined with existing digital rights management systems.

“This was the first UHD live stream in Africa, and doing this at 50 frames per second utilising a new codec was a big win for us and sets us up well for future tests and the eventual deployment of UHD as a new standard for streaming,” Khan said at the time.

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DStv could go 4K next year