Sonyâ€™s Video Unlimed 4K service has launched in USA. It is also the first 4K download service to go online. Right now it includes over 70 feature films and TV shows, and Sony expects more than 100 titles to become available in 4K before the end of 2013.
Sony's Video Unlimed 4K download service now live
Sonyâ€™s rumored 4K movie service is finally live, which should please early adopters of 4K TVs – Sonyâ€™s 4K TVs that is. Video Unlimited 4K will only be available to Sony customers via the Sony FMP-X1 player that only connects to Sonyâ€™s 4K TVs.
Sonyâ€™s new cheaper X8 4K TV connected to the FMP-X1 with Video Unlimted 4K
Right now over 70 movies and TV shows are available in 4K, including Breaking Bad, as well as movies such as Moneyball, Think Like A Man, Premium Rush, Ghostbusters, The Amazing Spider-Man, Funny Girl, and The Guns of Navarone . For more information on Sonyâ€™s efforts in creating and remastering content in 4K see our Hollywood article here. Upcoming releases include This is the End, After Earth, and Elysium
- "Sony Pictures has been working in 4K for several years. 4K mastering and restoration allows us to capture and convey more of the information from a film's original 35mm negative, while new 4K cameras like the F65 offer higher resolution and expanded color palettes to help us create ever-more immersive experiences for audiences in theaters and at home." said Chris Cookson, President of Sony Pictures Technologies.
Currently, all 4K movies will have to be downloaded to the hard drive in the FMP-X1. No streaming option is available. 4K downloads currently take up about 40-50 GB per movie (Sony says that the 2TB HDD can store up to 50 4K movies) with H.264 compression (based on eyeIOâ€™s technology, same as Netflix). Sony says that eventually they will take the step to next-generation H.265 compression that should halve data requirements, and actually make streaming a possibility. Surround sound is also offered.
Movies are offered for rent or purchase. TV episodes cost $3.99, while feature films start at $7.99 for a 24-hour rental, or $29.99 for a purchase. For now Video Unlimited 4K is only available in the US, but Sony plans to make it available everywhere, eventually.