We asked around at IFA 2018 and were told that 20th Century Fox and Warner Bros’ first HDR10+ content will arrive later this year. Rakuten will also offer content. However, Dolby Vision has a substantial lead.
Amazon and 20th Century Fox
Amazon released the very first HDR10+ content in late 2017 but there is still some debate in user forums over whether it is actually available to stream on compatible Samsung TVs.
Besides Amazon, we only have assurances from the HDR10+ alliance and a couple of content partners to go by. The competing Dolby Vision HDR format has a significant lead in the home entertainment space with strong partners such as Apple, Amazon, Google, LG, Netflix, Sony, and all major Hollywood studios, except 20th Century Fox.
20th Century Fox is opposed to Dolby Vision so together with Samsung and Panasonic it has formed a HDR10+ alliance. At IFA 2018, TP Vision (Philips TV) announced that it is officially joining the alliance.
- “A standardized licensing process has allowed partners, including content creators, television and device manufacturers, to easily incorporate HDR10+ technology,” said Danny Kaye, Executive Vice President of 20th Century Fox and Managing Director of the Fox Innovation Lab. “We’re encouraged by the interest of early adopters and an expanded HDR10+ ecosystem that will improve the viewing experiences for all audiences.”
But what about actual content from 20th Century Fox?
- “20th Century Fox has committed to incorporating HDR10+ in its upcoming new release slate. The studio is currently exploring several titles for release in the marketplace and plans to announce availability in the coming weeks,” the alliance said at IFA 2018.
Warner Bros and Rakuten
Warner Bros previously said that it will release its “vast catalog of over seventy-five 4K HDR titles to the home” but it is not clear how Warner is planning to do that. The statement indicates that the studio has partnered with a streaming provider.
The HDR10+ alliance added that Warner Bros will “release their industry leading library of 4K titles in HDR10+ later this year”. Warner Bros is still releasing movies in Dolby Vision.
Furthermore, Rakuten TV has announced that it will make HDR10+ content available on Samsung TVs. The service is available in Austria, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Spain, United Kingdom, Portugal, Switzerland, Belgium, Netherlands, and Japan.
- “At Rakuten TV, we have the mission to deliver the best cinema experience at home,” said Sidharth Jayant, Global Product Director at Rakuten TV. “Samsung is our premium partner in this regard, and our upcoming collaboration on HDR10+ reinforces our commitment to be the VoD reference platform for Smart TVs. With dynamic metadata added to the HDR signal, combined with the widest 4K HDR catalog of new releases that we currently provide to European Smart TV owners, we are confident Rakuten TV will deliver an unforgettable cinema experience at home.”
That is all. One year after announcing the HDR10+ collaboration at IFA 2017, the alliance still has very little to show for it. With almost no content available, only three TV manufacturers (Samsung, Panasonic and Philips), and only two major Hollywood studios (Fox and Warner) onboard, HDR10+ is fighting an uphill battle against Dolby Vision. Technically, a TV can support both formats but manufacturers appear to have already chosen sides.