Widgets Magazine

Are You Ready For Some Unpixelated Football?!

“Will consumer adoption of 4K grow because of fantasy football?”
by Josh Srago
It’s no secret that the NFL and college football seasons are upon us again. This means Sundays and Saturdays spent at home with family and friends, gathered around that glowing screen to cheer on your favorite football team.
Most Sundays there will be 13 or 14 games being played. If we exclude the Sunday Night Football game, which is broadcast on a national network and has no other NFL games as competition, that gives us 12 or 13 games between 1 PM EST and 7:30 PM EST, with 9 being played simultaneously the day this post went live.
The NFL is such big business because of how many eyes it draws in and the advertising dollars that come along with all the potential consumers that they even created their own network for 24/7 programming.
With the evolution of fantasy football, many fans are jumping back and forth between the potentially two games available in their viewing area trying to keep up with all the scoring plays that break into the games and track how their players are doing. The NFL network created Sunday programming that made these NFL fans’ dreams come true by giving us the NFL RedZone.
The NFL RedZone is a very simple concept: take your large television and turn it into a series of windows showing every game being played simultaneously and only make one the dominant screen when someone is close to scoring and reaches the red zone (inside the opponents 20 yard line). This gave the NFL a channel many fans wanted to add to their cable subscription and fantasy football fans their own visual version of crack.
There is, though, a catch to the NFL RedZone channel. Your television is a fixed resolution and size. If you want to be able to keep an eye on all the games simultaneously but no one is in the red zone, the size of the windows available prevent you from seeing much detail in what’s going on. In one experience with this channel in standard definition, which some people still use due to the increase in cost in the jump to HD, I’ve heard it compared to watching the 8-bit graphics of Tecmo Bowl. I’m sure that was a bit of an exaggeration, but the point stands. So what can be done to make this a better viewing experience?
It was with that question that 4K in the home finally sounded like a worthwhile investment. Think about the possibility of the intricate details that would appear with the increase in pixel content for this application. 4 times the pixel density when up to eight games were being simultaneously shown means that you could, more than likely, be able to identify the players with some amount of accuracy by number or name.
Yes, we are a still a ways away from having true 4K media coming down the pipeline from our cable companies, but the majority of the arguments I’ve heard in favor of 4K have revolved around increased viewing capabilities for movies. For many people 1080p is just fine and they don’t see a huge advantage in making the upgrade, but then there are sports fans.
Two of the biggest times of year when large format displays are purchased are right before major sporting events: the Super Bowl and March Madness, another occasional multi-screen experience. These are fans that are upgrading for the best viewing experience possible. Those of us that have seen what true 4K looks like know the intricate detail that jumps out and the enhanced viewing experience that brings.
It will be interesting to see if, come February and March of 2015, we start to see a real uptick in consumers looking to make the leap to 4K or another Ultra HD format, even if it is still being upscaled.

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