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June - 2015 - issue > CXO View Point

HDR & the Future of Content Creation

By Vince Pizzica, Senior Executive Vice President of Corporate Development & Technology, Technicolor
Friday, June 5, 2015
By Vince Pizzica, Senior Executive Vice President of Corporate Development & Technology, Technicolor
Technicolor SA (TCH.PA) is a provider of services and products for the communication, media & entertainment industries. This Issy-les-Moulineaux, France headquartered company has a current market capitalization of €2.02 billion.

Image quality is continually evolving and has a huge role to play in the future of content creation and delivery. The next big revolution in entertainment is High Dynamic Range (HDR) which will offer consumers TV’s and set-top boxes that provide much more vivid, colourful and lifelike entertainment experiences. While HDR is the acronym in the spotlight, it is actually part of a group of technologies that electronic companies will begin to support, whether through new codecs or capabilities in silicon.

Better pixels - not just more pixels and brightness alone - are the key to unlocking the best viewing experiences. HDR gives extra contrast and perceived sharpness that reveals details in the darkest and lightest parts of an image that would not otherwise be seen. While increasing brightness plays a role in adding highlight detail, at Technicolor, we believe that enhancing dark shadow images is equally important. HDR technology allows us to both “raise the ceiling” on brightness and “drop the floor”, to the point where dark blacks and grey gradients reveal incredible detail that the consumer has never before been able to see. These improvements in dynamic range go hand-in-hand with other experience-enhancement technologies like Wide Colour Gamut (which expands the colour palette for creatives and TVs beyond those that are seen on TV today) and Higher Frame Rate (swapping the standard 24 frames per second for up to 60 frames per second which enables much smoother movement, which is especially useful for sports content).

However, while this development continues to be exciting and full of opportunity, there is the risk of fragmentation where numerous players are involved in the creation and delivery of content into the home. Too many different visions and competing fiefdoms will not create an environment where products can be developed easily, can inter-operate together and are well understood by the consumers that buy them.

The importance of industry standards

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