Hulu Begins Rollout of 60fps Live Streaming for Select Channels on iPhone, Apple TV, and More

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Feb 8, 2018.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    Hulu on Reddit this week announced that it will begin rolling out support for 60 frames per second live streams on its "Hulu With Live TV" cord-cutting service, launching in time for viewers to stream the Olympics and March Madness. Hulu said it was aware that 60fps streaming was "one of the most-requested features" by its viewers, leading to this week's announcement (via Cord Cutters News).

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    The company explained that the update will see a launch in phases, and began yesterday with Phase 1, including the following channels now supporting 60fps on Hulu With Live TV: CNN, CNN International, HLN, TNT, TBS, TCM, TruTV, Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, all SHOWTIME channels, "about half" of available FOX affiliates, all NBC affiliates, and New England Channel News.
    Hulu noted that individual affiliates "may temporarily revert back" to 30fps streams when adjusting for internet speeds, giving viewers a more stable experience. Phase 1 will include Hulu apps on iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, Xbox One, Fire TV, Samsung Tizen TV, and Nintendo Switch.

    The company hasn't yet indicated when Phase 2 will begin, or what channels/devices will be part of that rollout. Later this year, Hulu will also be launching a redesigned user interface across its on-demand and live services, including a new Live TV guide. For the Live TV section of Hulu, the latest numbers put the service at 450,000 paid subscribers, beating out YouTube TV (300,000), but still trailing DirecTV Now (1 million) and Sling TV (nearly 2 million).

    Article Link: Hulu Begins Rollout of 60fps Live Streaming for Select Channels on iPhone, Apple TV, and More
     
  2. Imm0rta1Crow macrumors newbie

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    Better, but still only streaming in stereo. #fail. :mad:
     
  3. mmomega macrumors demi-god

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  4. Avieshek Suspended

    Avieshek

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    #4
    So.. can we start asking 120fps for ProMotion?
     
  5. oneMadRssn macrumors 601

    oneMadRssn

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    #5
    Perhaps someone that knows more about this can answer - is over the air TV broadcast in 60fps? Or, can it be?
     
  6. friedmud macrumors 65816

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    Video quality is ultimately why I landed on using Hulu for most everything.

    I tried DirectTV Now and the CBS app subscriptions... both had garbage video quality (overly compressed, jittery). Hulu knows how to get it done.

    Can't wait for them to start streaming some shows / channels in 4k!
     
  7. critter13 macrumors 6502

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    #7
    I have the same question, will the actual broadcasts be in 60fps?

    EDIT: ah OTA, afaik the signal is 30fps

    Which makes me still wonder, are we actually getting 60fps from camera all the way to tv with this hulu update?
     
  8. jdillings macrumors 68000

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  9. Ballis macrumors 6502a

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    #9
    I wish not only sports or live, but everything would stream at this framerate. Just as most 4K movies just has been upscaled, they could pre render frame interpolation to deliver smoother playback.
     
  10. ChromeAce macrumors regular

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    #10
    This is all marketing ********. The only 60fps content available is Billy Lynn’s Halftime Walk, a movie shot in that format. All other content is shot at 24fps. Video games can pump out 60 locally. Which leaves live sporting events which would be a new thing if they even have all the hardware set up to do it. Forget news in 60fps. Not happening. CNN would have to upgrade every camera and switcher in the signal path. HDR and 4K would be a far more meaningful upgrade.
     
  11. oneMadRssn macrumors 601

    oneMadRssn

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    Exactly my thought. As a secondary matter - is Hulu upconverting the signal, or is Hulu getting a better feed than what everyone else gets OTA.

    As I understand it, the OTA signal can be 60hz 720i, or 30hz 1080i (and obviously some are 30hz 720i at half the bandwidth). But I don't know whether any actually transmit at 60hz.
     
  12. jetjaguar macrumors 68030

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    #12
    Audio quality on all these streaming services is trash
     
  13. Biggey macrumors newbie

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    Mostly for Live TV, yes. Live Shows like SNL for instance, Live News, Sports and soap operas are all shot in 60fps and aired in 60fps.
    --- Post Merged, Feb 8, 2018 ---
    Thankfully most News and Live TV Shows have been shot and aired in 60fps for quite some time now. No hardware upgrades needed. Hulu just needs to upgrade their stream quality to match what has already been airing on Live TV for years.
     
  14. HobeSoundDarryl, Feb 8, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018

    HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 604

    HobeSoundDarryl

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    #14
    I'm no expert- and did NOT stay at a Holiday Inn last night- but best I know, the answer is NO. I suspect they are taking the 30fps interlaced signals and creating a 60fps progressive signal from it. I haven't seen anything that says these networks are delivering content shot at 60fps.

    Could someone in the know- and/or that DID stay at a Holiday Inn- point us to this big reveal?
    --- Post Merged, Feb 8, 2018 ---
    Do you know this for sure? This would be somewhat news to me. This is old info from 2014 but it implies SNL is 30fps with slow motion sequences shot at 60fps: http://www.smecc.org/saterday_night_live_-_the_cameras_used_-.htm Is that wrong or has something changed since 2014?

    I know the capability is certainly there. In relatively cheap consumer equipment, I've been shooting my own stuff at 1080p 60fps for many years now. I just haven't seen anything about this on the broadcast level. More specifically, is this actually something NEW or is this how they've been delivering it all along and are just pretending that it's something new now?

    Lastly, the wording of the announcement seems to be about making the capability available, not necessarily delivering 60fps (native) programming. Conceptually, they could make the capability for 4K or even 8K available in the very same way, yet perhaps never actually have any 4K or 8K come through. They do list a bunch of channels and appear to say "now supporting 60fps" but I wonder if "supporting" actually translates to "broadcasting 60fps video shot at 60fps"?
     
  15. BeSweeet macrumors 68000

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    #15
    1080i60 vs. 1080p60

    Side by side, they appear similar in terms of smooth motion, motion blur, etc. So, referring these web channels as 60FPS seems appropriate .
     
  16. kagharaht macrumors 6502a

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    Cancelled. No DD just plain stereo. Oh well
     
  17. HobeSoundDarryl, Feb 8, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018

    HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 604

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    #17
    I am skeptical that customers would make this "one of the most requested features." I wonder if the general customer could even tell a difference and/or know that such an option even exists to ask for it.

    On the other hand, people have been building home theater surround sound systems in their homes since way back into the 1990s or so. In cutting the cord, they must notice that they no longer get 5.1 surround from all the television that used to play it when they had cable or satt. Guessing- perhaps just wildly here- I would guess more consumers might notice that and request that vs. 60fps video.

    And weirdly, I wonder why none of the streamers are passing through 5.1 anyway. It would be a huge point of competitive differentiation to be the ONLY streamer offering 5.1 audio... and significantly close a big hole is the migration away from cable or satt.

    Sure, I realize that not everyone knows about, is equipped for or cares about 5.1, but in some debate about consumer demand of 60fps vs. 5.1, I would (wildly) guess that consumers might be more aware that they are missing 5.1 than they are about 60fps.

    Maybe some Hulu survey where they word 60fps as some big advance and just leave off any option to mark 5.1 surround? Then, they can say: "you asked for it, you got it"???

    Another site builds on this story by talking about "for sports fans" and 60fps would certainly be beneficial for watching fast-moving sports. Another ties this into seeing Olympic sports in 60fps and again that would be a benefit. But with sports too, sports fans are - presumably- more likely to have long since set up some 5.1 surround to feel like they are there. I would think sport fans asking for 60fps would be at least as likely to be asking for 5.1 surround too. Faux surround via stereo is far from the same.

    Lastly, the Olympics tie-in is obvious. Our friends across the Pacific will be seeing some of the Olympics in 4K and 8K. Conceptually, a streaming service could at least roll out a 4K Olympics easier than most any other source. Wouldn't it be great if someone did... at least as an option?
     
  18. vipergts2207 macrumors 68000

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    #18
    Wow I came here to say exactly this, so I was very happy to see this as the first comment. Get with the 20th century Hulu!
     
  19. JediZenMaster Suspended

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    #19
    If they are “upconverting” 30 fps to 60fps wouldn’t that cause shows to have a weird “filmlook” effect?
     
  20. HobeSoundDarryl, Feb 8, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018

    HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 604

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    #20
    No. "Upconverting" 1080i 30fps to 1080p 60fps just doubles the frames. the 60fps version tends to look/play better on non-interlaced devices like computer and mobile screens and modern TVs that are basically more computer screens than traditional TV screens. BUT, broadcasters are still married to 1080i because that is the HD broadcast standard. Your TV or STB receives a 1080i signal and dynamically doubles the frames to feed a TV capable of 60fps.

    Real 1080p60fps would actually have changing information on up to each of those 60 fps. This is why it's desirable to in-the-know sports fans because it allows fast-moving sports to have less blur-judder-jumpiness. Doubling 30fps to 60fps doesn't do that. But if this is getting stuff shot at 60fps and delivered at 60fps, it may make a noticeable difference- especially in fast-moving scenes (sports, action movies, etc).

    This talks to this topic better than I can describe it: https://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2413044,00.asp

    The "film look" issue is typically working with film sources rendered at 24fps and converting it to 30fps. That is not just doubling the frames but a actually involves a bit of complication.

    The other "film look" is the other way- the desire to see 24fps at 24fps but not having such an option via :apple:TV until recent software updates.

    This: https://www.cnet.com/how-to/1080i-and-1080p-are-the-same-resolution/ actually does a pretty good job talking to all of these topics, though I don't quite buy the final conclusion in that last line.
     
  21. friedmud macrumors 65816

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    #21
    About the loss of 5.1: most people won't notice because their receivers will automatically apply Prologic/Dolby Surround/DTX:Neural-X or whatever they have available to take that 2-channel audio and make it fill all the speakers.

    I have a 5.1.2 Dolby Atmos setup (2 speakers on the ceiling above the seating position)... and watching Live TV on Hulu is "fine" (I don't really expect live broadcast TV to look or sound great). It "uses" all the speakers (I like DTS:Neural-X for that purpose myself).

    DirectTV Now has Dolby Digital for on-demand content... but they use so much video compression I can't watch it...

    BTW: Hulu is aware of this: https://hulu.uservoice.com/forums/5...ons/19195570-dolby-digital-5-1-surround-sound
     
  22. HobeSoundDarryl, Feb 8, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018

    HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 604

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    #22
    I know we like to play that "most people won't notice" but I notice. Maybe I'm not "most people?"

    To me that's a crutch to make something we had that now some of us don't have be acceptable. We could ride that all the way down to SD video quality too. Most people won't notice 960 vs. 1080... then most people won't notice 720 vs. 1080 and then finally most people won't notice 540 vs. 720.

    It's just too easy to play that card to rationalize losing something readily available to us. In other words, it's a very easy way to let the streamers off the hook. I'd rather "the future" arrive with more than "the past", rather than being so quick to "most people..." away features we used to have that are technically superior to the alternative.

    However, that's very much to each his own. I know that faux surround can sound pretty good, even fooling some people... just as I know from recent experience that if someone has a 1080p and 4K set but are feeding it SD, they don't always realize they are not getting 1080 or 4K... and can even assume they are. They thought I was a video tweaking wizard when I switched their connection from cable (RG6) to HDMI and they suddenly had HD on those TVs.

    I recall some guy claiming he was getting 4K via the :apple:TV4 because a youtube video said it was a 4K demo and he could play it. And when pointed to an 8K youtube demo, it appeared that the "4" could play 8K too. Trickery & illusions can fool people.

    Nevertheless, I ALMOST went with PSVue as seeming best of this lot until I realized this particular compromise. I've enjoyed 5.1 surround since way back into the 1990's. I don't want to step backwards for "the future" now. FYI: So I went another way, pairing :apple:TV + the Channels app with HDHomeRuns including a Prime, then Comcast CableCard for video signals. That kept HD with 5.1 audio but dumped the cable box leases. Net:net: saved a fair amount of money but don't feel like I'm losing anything. Watching local OTA + Cable TV through :apple:TV, full-featured DVR functionality, no broadband data cap worries, etc. For those that refuse to compromise on stuff like this, it's a GOOD alternative to all of these streaming service options.
     
  23. greekappi macrumors member

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    #23
    So I’ve tried Hulu Live (hated it, menu sucked, no guide or easy way to see live stations) and PS Vue (much better but not perfect) and I just started a trial of YouTube TV. It so far is the best of the bunch, but yeah, the no 5.1 really kills me. The only streaming service that offers it that I’m aware of is Netflix, and their stuff sounds great. I mean not lossless Blu-ray audio great but still a massive improvement over others.

    C’mon Hulu and YouTube, get with the program. The stereo only is an embarrassment.
     
  24. AcesHigh87 macrumors 6502a

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    #24
    I delivery broadcast television, I can tell you for a fact that it isn’t. In North America most content is sent to broadcast as 29.97 frames per second (technically interlaced 59.94 but it displays back as 29.97).

    So basically this is a gimmick at best. Even broadcasting at 29.97 most Footage is shot at 23.98 so they can play it back at whatever they want but it won’t change the look any because it wasn’t shot with that many frames.

    The only time 60 FPS makes a difference is when you are talking Footage that’s created at 60 such as video game footage and maybe some sports, I’m not sure what they shoot at. Content created under won’t see any benefit to a higher frame rate.
     
  25. HobeSoundDarryl, Feb 8, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018

    HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 604

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    #25
    Yeah, Netflix though is not delivering classic live television service like the others. Generally, some of these do have some movie-streaming offerings (I think DirecTV Now does that too), getting 5.1 in those movies to customers. But TV and Sports almost always have 5.1 sound in them and have for many years. Doing without to "beat the man" seems "expensive" IMO to maybe save $10 or $30/month.

    Having put a lot into my own evaluation of all of these options, I strongly endorse a hybrid option, not quite cord cutting but not paying for some of the more exploitative parts of cable/satt either. While not for everyone, that combination of :apple:TV+HDHomeRun boxes+Channels app is pretty great. If one factors broadband alone vs. broadband in a double or triple play package, costs can be better, about the same or only a little more than broadband alone + a bundle of streaming options that replace a typical mix of live cable programming.

    Got rid of any cable box lease fees. I am using :apple:TVs for the replacement box. Have a fully-functional (not handicapped) DVR for all TVs (also from Channels app). I don't worry about the broadband cap. I have the cable company's mobile app for on-the-go video streaming. I've got local OTA HD & SD + all of the cable channels I want in a single App with a classic programming grid that I can customize to show only the channels I want in whatever order I want them. Easy & simple: best of the cable/satt way with the benefits of "the future" but not compromising picture or sound or DVR features or having to hop app-to-app or box-to-box... nor train others to hop to this app for this and that app for that, or this box for this and that box for that, etc.

    I really wanted to go PS Vue but even if I could save $10 or $30/month, I considered that much too little for the compromises. I don't need to "beat greedy cable" that badly, and frankly, with stand-alone broadband pricing (and a hard cap), cable wasn't going to actually get "beat" much anyway.
     

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