The first preview of Filmbox International’s soon-to-launch 4K Funbox channel will be shown on the free-to-air satellite platform that the satellite TV service Eutelsat operates at its HOT BIRD position.
Filmbox owner SPI International said the 4K FunBox UHD channel features native 4K footage of nature scenes such as wildlife and landscapes.
Satellite companies are finding upgrade to 4K content easier and less expensive
The official premiere was placed at the Eutelsat booth during the ANGA conference in Cologne last month. The full commercial version will premiere this autumn as an encrypted video for European cablecos and telcos.
As The Online Reporter predicted, satcos are the first of the pay TV services to offer 4K content because they have the fewest and least expensive upgrades to make to be 4K-ready — with the exception of OTT services who use other companies’ broadband networks.
All that a satellite service needs is the bandwidth to receive and send 4K videos. Because the service is linear, it sends one 4K broadcast to all recipients that have a 4K capable TV or STB.
Eutelsat jumped to the fore in 4K by launching HOT BIRD 4K1, the first channel in Europe, the Middle East and North Africa that consumers can receive directly if they have a 4K TV with the appropriate demodulators and HEVC decoders.
Berk Uziyel, executive director of Filmbox, said, “With 4K FunBox UHD viewers will be able to experience more nuance and detail, faster frame rates, exceptional contrast dynamics and extended colors. In addition to wildlife documentaries, some of the eye-popping content on our channel also presents the San Francisco skyline, the amazing study of cloud movements and skylight as well as Ultra HD footage of Asian cities by night. We are also planning to add sports programming and musical events, all in 4K quality.”
It’s not “Breaking Bad” or “House of Cards,” but it’s a start. In the meantime, OTT services will deliver much more, and more entertaining, 4K content over broadband and home networks.
GFK, which tracks such things, said it estimates that by year-end, there will be 700,000 to 900,000 households in Europe with UHD sets that are connected to a pay TV service.
It’s not the US or China but it’s a start. Soon there’ll be millions because prices of UHD sets in Europe are dropping as they already have in the US and China.
Filmbox Live is a paid service that is available in Turkey, the US, Poland, Romania, Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary.
The subscription is valid only in the country where it was ordered.
The monthly subscription fee is $7.00.
It is not available as an embedded icon on UHD TVs in the States, something it will need if it is to succeed in the States. It has apps for iOS and Android devices plus smart TVs from Samsung, Sony, LG, Philips and Vestel plus the Roku NTB and gaming consoles from Sony and Microsoft.
Filmbox International is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Kino Polska TV, whose majority stakeholder is SPI International…
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