Will 4K ever come to broadcast?

Episode 1098 (32:26)

Tom from Harrisburg, PA

Tom wants to know if we'll ever be able to see 4K TV over the air, because the broadcast channels have a limited amount of bandwidth. Scott says it is a challenge. In Japan, they are experimenting with technology that would embed an 8K signal inside the broadcast spectrum and they've managed to send the signal up to 17 miles. Part of the solution is through compression. Doesn't that kill the quality? Scott says they're not adding or interpolating information, they're just removing repetitive data and squeezing it. Quality and resolution will be lost that way. Scott doesn't think we'll see 4K broadcasts any time soon as a result. It'll largely be through streaming. And even then, it's compressed heavily. At least we have HD in the broadcast realm, if you're within line of sight.

At the end of the day, if you want high resolution, you need new cable laid. David says that even then, cable companies are going to want to charge us for it. Scott says that the audience really doesn't care, as they prefer convenience over quality.