NAB 2018: The Ultra HD Forum has released its Phase B guidelines demonstrating at the Las Vegas trade show the developments of UHD and HDR formats to enhance viewing experiences. 

Marvels jessica jones season 3 source netflix

Marvel’s Jessica Jones season 3 in UHD 

Source: Netflix

The Forum will showcase the Phase B technologies which follow on from the Phase A baseline by “providing an evolutionary path to enhance the viewer experience.” 

Its Phase B guidelines include dynamic metadata, next-generation audio (NGA) and high frame rate (HFR) to enhance viewing experiences. 

The UHD Forum explained the concerns raised within the industry about the perceived technological risks and changing goalposts for operators in pursuing the development of UHD and HDR formats. 

The UHD Forum Chair of the Guidelines Work group Madeleine Noland said the organisation doesn’t agree with that point of view.

She said: “Our Guidelines are regularly updated, and further technologies will be addressed. Also, as with the Phase A guidelines, we remain strongly focussed on backwards compatibility so that the introduction of new solutions doesn’t break what’s already in place.

”Phase B Guidelines will soon include end-to-end workflows for all distribution systems including OTA, MVPD and OTT, which is a hallmark of the Forum’s work”.

Uhd forum logo

During IBC2017 the UHD Forum Chairperson and President Thierry Fautier told delegates the industry is moving at different paces from OTT and traditional broadcasting with the possibilities of UHD shifting into different architectures with new technologies employed across the content lifecycle. 

Netflix and Amazon are leading the way with supporting HDR and 4K UHD TV programmes, including Marvel’s Jessica Jones as well as new release and older films on Amazon.  

The Forum has set the guidelines as an indication of what improvements and enhanced video content can be expected from the increasing 4K video content.

The 80-page Phase B document aims to demystify the five areas for the future of UHD: 

  • Content-aware enconding
  • Dual-layer HDR technologies
  • Dynamic HDR metadata systems including Dolby Vision and SL-HDR1
  • High frame rate (100/120 FPS)
  • Next generation audio (Dolby AC-4 Audio and MPEG-H Audio)

The Forum will showcase the phase B technologies first hand for delegates in the Futures Park of NAB in North Hall.