4k licensing reduction

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by jayducharme, Dec 19, 2015.

  1. jayducharme macrumors 68040

    jayducharme

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2006
    Location:
    The thick of it
    #1
  2. MacFanBoi macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2009
    #2
    Doubt it. Apple just didn't see the point with so little 4K content available by third parties and nothing on the iTunes Store is available in 4K so they won't add 4K support until they can make money from it.
     
  3. H8ter2 macrumors newbie

    H8ter2

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2015
    #3
    I'm sure it has more to do with the fact almost nothing is streamed or broadcast in 4K, it may have had a little impact in regards to the cost to reward ratio which is to pay a lot now for something almost nobody has access too at this point in time.
     
  4. nebo1ss macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2010
    #4
    I am sure you are right. It is much more likely now that you will see 4K content on the Apple store with the reduced price of licensing for HEVC. Both Netflix and Amazon have 4k Content and there is a lot of 4K content on Utube. ULTRAFIX also has lots of content.

    I always think those that come on here and say there is no 4K content are those without a 4K TV.
     
  5. scottct1 macrumors regular

    scottct1

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2012
    Location:
    Connecticut USA
    #5
    Most of NBC's shows are all 4K as well.

    There is a LOT more 4K out there then people think. They haven't been released a lot of the 4K content to the public because there have not been a lot of devices to display them on.

    CES is going to be interesting in 3 weeks. Going to be a lot of 4K announced as well as new 4K hardware to play it on.
     
  6. TrueBlou macrumors demi-god

    TrueBlou

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2014
    Location:
    Scotland
    #6
    When push comes to shove there's really only one reason the ATV 4 doesn't support 4K. And that's that Apple don't sell 4K content on iTunes yet.

    Once Apple start populating the iTunes Stores with 4K content there will be a 4K compatible Apple TV in one form or other. Of that there's no doubt.
     
  7. mattopotamus macrumors G5

    mattopotamus

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2012
    #7
    exactly. Some people said broadcast? That has zero to do with the ATV. Apple always adds the tech when it matures, and that is why they did not put it in the current ATV.
     
  8. HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 603

    HobeSoundDarryl

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2004
    Location:
    Hobe Sound, FL (20 miles north of Palm Beach)
    #8
    OP, if Amazon and Roku can ship 4K-playback boxes that cost a lot less than :apple:TV, licensing cost was not an obstacle.

    The lack of 4K content for :apple:TV in the iTunes store is not the reason either. Why? It makes no sense at all to put 4K content for :apple:TV in the iTunes store until there are lots of 4K :apple:TV boxes in homes to play it. The hardware must come first- or at least at the same time- else, not $1 could be made if EVERYTHING in the iTunes store had a 4K video option for :apple:TV right now. It would be the same with loading up stores with 4K blu ray discs right now. How can any of those discs sell before there are 4K players also for sale and in which to play those discs?

    The perception of the lack of much 4K video is lame. Lack of 4K content is almost entirely driven by lack of a mainstream channel through which to deliver 4K content. As soon as there is a way to monetize 4K with the masses, 4K content availability will explode. Apple could have led the way there but chose to cling to 1080p instead. This excuse of lack of much 4K content availability seems to justify that decision but lack of broad software support of 3D touch or Apple Pay or TouchID or FaceTime or most relevantly- AppleTV apps for sale- didn't hold Apple back from rolling out new hardware capable of such features and leaving it to the software producers to play catch up with that new hardware.

    Pretty much every film ever shot- movies & TV- is already stored at greater than 4K content. Monetizing it in 4K only awaits a mainstream channel to make it (profitably) worth rolling it all out in 4K. Apple could have led that charge instead of probably moving on 4K last... exactly as they did with 1080p. It is a good move for shareholders as they get to sell lots of us the 4 now and the 5 "now with 4K" later, just as they sold us the 2 and then the 3 "now with 1080p" a few years ago.

    Will simplifying the licensing processes & costs help? Sure. Was it the reason Apple didn't roll this out with 4K? Only Apple could say for sure but I suggest almost certainly not per the above. Again, if much cheaper boxes from Amazon & Roku can embrace 4K, licensing costs was probably NOT the issue.
     
  9. Rigby macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2008
    Location:
    San Jose, CA
    #9
    As expected. :p

    Licensing cost is almost certainly not a consideration for Apple. They have a significant patent portfolio relevant to video codecs themselves, receive licensing fees from H.264 and other related technologies as a member of MPEG LA, and are likely to make licensing money from H.265 as well, regardless of what HEVC Advance will ask for.
     
  10. cynics macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2012
    #10

    The licensing is a problem with the content, not the implementation of the hardware.
     
  11. HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 603

    HobeSoundDarryl

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2004
    Location:
    Hobe Sound, FL (20 miles north of Palm Beach)
    #11
    OK, but I was replying to OP and OP clearly keys on costs in post #1
     
  12. priitv8 macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2011
    Location:
    Estonia
    #12
    The next question will be - can HEVC be enabled on aTV 4 just by a software upgrade? Or are you implying that Apple deliberately left all necessary hardware out of the package as well?
    From previous experience (remember the 802.11n enablement on 2006 MacBooks?), Apple has done this as well - quietly included the hardware, but enabled and marketed it only after the environment became ready.
     
  13. HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 603

    HobeSoundDarryl

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2004
    Location:
    Hobe Sound, FL (20 miles north of Palm Beach)
    #13
    If you are Apple, do you:
    • Enable 4K playback on existing hardware and make no new money? Or,
    • Roll out the :apple:TV5 "now with 4K," sell us all again, and make a bunch of profit?
    Run a poll if you lack confidence. Even this crowd should get that question right.
     
  14. priitv8 macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2011
    Location:
    Estonia
    #14
    You sound like a pessimist.
    What interests me is - whether current aTV 4 hardware is capable of driving a 4K video out?
    According to spec, it has HDMI 1.4, which means 4K@24fps.
    A8 should be capable as well. Does it possess hardware HEVC decoder? Dunno.
     
  15. cynics macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2012
    #15
    I don't think it's all that clear, because I perceived it the way the OP intended it when he said licensing cost which aligns with the link he/she posted. Which then falls back to, if Apple doesn't have the content then why would their box support it?
     
  16. mattopotamus macrumors G5

    mattopotamus

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2012
    #16
    HEVC requires certain hardware, which the ATV does not have.
     
  17. HobeSoundDarryl, Dec 23, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2015

    HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 603

    HobeSoundDarryl

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2004
    Location:
    Hobe Sound, FL (20 miles north of Palm Beach)
    #17
    I didn't say anything pessimistic or optimistic. I framed my response to your post as a question. If you read negative into it, you're the one being pessimistic. If you re-read my response, you could just as easily assume the more optimistic answer of the two... and- had you- would that make me an optimist then?

    To your new questions:
    • apparently the new "4s" hardware IS capable of processing a 4K video file for potential playback
    • whether it can actually push it out to a 4K TV is not 100% clarified (best I know). In other words, while the A8 has the horses for it, the output to the TV may be capped at 1080p (though I don't know this with certainty).
    • it is highly unlikely that h.265 decoding is built inside the "4", so, if that would be the format of 4K videos, it would (likely) require a h.265 software decoder if Apple wanted the "4" to play 4K. I don't know (and doubt) if the A8 has the horses for an effective h.265 software decoder. Apparently h.265 decoding is a VERY DEMANDING processing chore.
     
  18. cynics macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2012
    #18
    I agree with you here. However look at it this way...

    If Apple did an upgrade for 4k@30hz (lets assume this was possible on all technical levels) they would have an instant cash cow. Not in hardware sales but in iTunes sales. Everyone with a 4K tv that's dying for content would have to have an ATV because it's connected to the iTunes. If Apple were able to get enough content out on their store they'd nearly have a monopoly on 4K content for a while. They have the infrastructure and money to support it relatively quickly.

    I digress, I fully agree with you though, we won't see it until there is a hardware update.
     
  19. HobeSoundDarryl, Dec 23, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2015

    HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 603

    HobeSoundDarryl

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2004
    Location:
    Hobe Sound, FL (20 miles north of Palm Beach)
    #19
    I don't know how to read this...

    ...and not think the OP is keying the topic around cost of licensing. I did underline the 3 key words in OPs post #1 and that's how I take it. Obviously, you take it differently which is fine. My point was that if OP is in fact keying the supposition around the "4" not having 4K because of licensing costs, how does that reconcile with other set top boxes from Roku and Amazon rolling out with 4K and costing far less than the "4"?

    Of course, if OP didn't really mean to suggest that maybe high licensing costs were why the "4" lacked 4K... that is was other issues referenced in the link... then I apparently mis-interpreted his post, reading that sentence too literally in the quoted post above. Sorry.
     
  20. HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 603

    HobeSoundDarryl

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2004
    Location:
    Hobe Sound, FL (20 miles north of Palm Beach)
    #20
    OK. But Apple being Apple could also roll out the :apple:TV5 "now with 4K" and we would all buy again and buy that 4K video from iTunes too. So they get a cash cow of media sales either way and another blast of profitable hardware sales too.

    This is not unprecedented. The :apple:TV3 was pretty much the :apple:TV2 "now with 1080p" (and little else). It is not unheard of for Apple to "hold something back" as part of justifying why we should "upgrade" to the next model of Apple hardware. Do we not get that very feeling over and over again in just about everything that Apple makes? Why would this be different?

    Besides full 4K requires a HDMI 2.X specification, not the 1.4 spec in this one. Yes, 1.4 is not an obstacle to pumping some 4K out of a box and to a 4K TV but that's NOT the way forward for the content owners.

    I agree with you that it would be terrific if 4K was more of a "just turn it on" option via some kind of software update. But I fully expect 4K to require :apple:TV5 "now with 4K" which will likely be the "4" with a variation of the A9 chip. I expect that as soon as next Fall or soon thereafter... coinciding with when iPads inherit the 4K cameras in the current iPhones... much as the "3" came to market soon after iPads could shoot 1080p, which arrived a good while after iPhones could shoot 1080p.
     
  21. cynics macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2012
    #21
    As far as hardware goes Apple used to say FaceTime used h265 with the iPhone 6. They have since removed that statement, maybe due to licensing issues. To me that would mean the A8 is capable of decoding it.

    I think a lot of people forget that Apple needs to move as a company. Apple needs a majority of their devices capable of supporting HEVC before introducing it or they get tech reviews...."No 4K on 5K iMacs!?!?!". Now macs have Skylake processors with built in HEVC decoders. The tech giant Apple can't have the agility a company like Roku has who doesn't supply the content nor have a host of products that need to support that content.
     
  22. cynics macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2012
    #22
    HDMI 2.0 is an issue and the main reason I don't see Apple offering an update for the current gen AppleTV however it's not a deal breaker. Many of us have been using hdmi 1.4 for 4K for quite sometime, even out of Apple devices like the Mac Mini.

    I'm more or less playing devils advocate because I agree with you, I don't see an update coming for 4K support. I just feel it would be possible and a lot of current content supports hdmi 1.4 just fine.
     
  23. HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 603

    HobeSoundDarryl

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2004
    Location:
    Hobe Sound, FL (20 miles north of Palm Beach)
    #23
    It would be possible... but not as profitable... and not as compatible with how 4K content is going to be distributed.

    Also, I pretty much expect 4K is going to come with the adoption of h.265 and that will probably be built into the A10 but maybe in a special version of the A9 for the :apple:TV5 in the next year or two.
     
  24. cynics macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2012
    #24
    Like I mentioned the decoder may already be there. Apple used to advertise FaceTime using it.

    http://appleinsider.com/articles/14...lus-use-h265-codec-for-facetime-over-cellular
     
  25. priitv8 macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2011
    Location:
    Estonia
    #25

Share This Page