• Staff Writer

DStv to Broadcast Fifa world cup in 4k

MultiChoice has announced it will broadcast and stream the 2022 Fifa World Cup in Qatar in 4K Ultra High Definition on SuperSport later this year.



4K UHD (2160p) offers four times more pixels than full high definition (also called 1080p), resulting in sharper images with more details.


Many international pay-TV providers now offer 4K, while the resolution has become the standard for the world’s top streaming services.

DStv’s channel resolution is currently capped at a maximum of full HD but using an interlaced scan, unlike the progressively scanned video found on streaming services.



Interlaced scan only sends half the lines in a frame of video to a screen, effectively reducing the refresh rate or “smoothness” of video in exchange for higher resolution.

Reducing the refresh rate like this can also introduce artefacts in fast-moving video, like sports.


4K streaming test

Four years ago, DStv streamed the last four matches of the 2018 Fifa World Cup live in 4K at 50 frames per second as part of a test on its renamed DStv Now platform.

That made the broadcaster the first in Africa to live stream in 4K resolution.

But doing so via satellite broadcasting is a vastly different ball game.

The company previously said it would not be possible to upgrade all of its channels to 4K due to the limited bandwidth available on broadcast satellites.



The bitrate of 4K is much higher than HD, which means it takes much more capacity to transmit.

However, there have been significant advancements in video and audio codecs used in broadcasting and streaming.

The Fifa World Cup 2022 will kick off on 20 November 2022.



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