DIRECTV (NASDAQ:DTV), AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T), Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ:CMCSA), and DISH Network Corp (NASDAQ:DISH) have announced that they will offer coverage of the Rio Olympics in 4K.
The companies have announced that they will broadcast various Olympic events in 4K ultra definition for customers with 4K TVs. Some of the Rio Olympics events that will be broadcasted in 4K include the opening ceremonies, basketball, swimming, judo, track, and field. Customers can access the events in 4K from August 6 to August 22. The firms have also announced that not all their TV packages will be part of the 4K offering.
Dish will only avail the offer through the 4K Joey set-top boxes or the Hopper 3 DVR. DirectTV customers who want to enjoy the offer will be required to upgrade to the Ultimate programming package or higher. Comcast will only offer the coverage in 4K through the Xfinity Ultra High Definition Sampler app and it will limit the 4K quality to LG and Samsung Ultra HD TVs. The companies are offering the 4K broadcasts through their premium packages in the hope of convincing more users to upgrade their subscriptions.
The 4K broadcasting offer is also expected to significantly push for higher 4K TV sales since people will want to enjoy the experience. Six million 4K TV sets were shipped in North America in 2015 and the Ultra HDTV update is expected to be higher towards the end of 2016. TV manufacturers take advantage of major sporting events such as the Olympics and the World Cup to launch their products and this is a strategy that has proven successful in the past.
The announcement that the companies will be offering coverage in 4K is expected to create an incentive for people to purchase 4K TV sets. One of the major reasons why Ultra HDTVs have not appealed to many is because there is limited 4K content.