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4K Battle Lines Drawn: Is There Room For Both HDR10 And Dolby Vision?

Amid the evolving 4K television market, ABI Research notes that manufacturers have choices to make in the battle between the HDR10 and Dolby Vision standards.

ABI notes that as an open standard HDR10 allows firmware updates, with it having the support of more manufacturers than Dolby Vision, however observes “this may change in the months ahead, as a number of content creators, including HBO, Paramount, Sony Pictures and Universal, rally in support of Dolby Vision”.

“The winner in the HDR10 and Dolby Vision competition is not yet clear,” Khin Sandi Lynn, ABI industry analyst, commented.

“Dolby Vision currently supports higher light output levels than HDR10 and is better suited to adjust to different manufacturers’ displays, but its downside is that, unlike HDR10, the standard requires built-in hardware, more costly IP licensing and involves a certification process for licensing.”

According to ABI, one possibility in the battle between the two standards “will be that Dolby Vision becomes the format for streaming movie and video-on-demand delivery, while HDR10 primarily supports live event and broadcast channels”.

“Consumers viewing content from a service supporting Dolby Vision on a non-supported TV set will likely not receive HDR signals,” ABI notes. “Instead, the TV will use colour upsampling technologies to simulate the HDR brightness and saturation.”

Meanwhile, amid the rollout of 4K, some markets will need to see the development of supporting infrastructure.

“Setting aside the fight between standards, some markets with less pervasive broadband deployments, like India, will need to perform infrastructure upgrades to support necessary bandwidth for 4K video service delivery,” Lynn stated.

“This will further help to increase the 4K TV adoption in the Asia Pacific region in which currently only 5 per cent of TV households own 4K sets.”

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