While many standards have already been developed, further development of 8K standards and best practices are critical for the expansion of the 8K ecosystem. For the standards supporting 8K already, we see a need to aid the commercialization of these technologies. For those in development, we want to be sure that 8K use cases are considered. Where standards are not necessarily needed or used, the 8KA should focus on developing best practices. Activities around 8K Standards Development also extend to consumer TVs, where the 8K Association offers a Certification program of its own.
Existing standards from the ITU and SMPTE help define the production requirements for UHD-2 or 8K content. Here, the 8K Association can assist in developing best practices for the capture and production of 8K content—both live and file-based. Organizations like MPEG and AOM (Alliance for Open Media) have defined codecs like HEVC (H.265) and AV1 which allow compression of 8K signals for distribution to consumers, while mezzanine codecs like JPEG-XS will become more important in a production environment. The 8K Association can support commercial encoding companies by aiding in the development of 8K encoding/decoding benchmarks like bit rates, compute resource optimization, and the use of AI to improve video quality, data rates and resource allocation. For 8K streaming, development of CMAF profiles is needed, while a need also exists for improved image quality metrics like VMAF and SSIM for 8K content.
Broadcasters in multiple regions are now considering upgrades to their capabilities that will include 8K. Such solutions could be over the air, 5G, satellite or hybrid solutions which include a broadband element. The 8K Association will seek to liaise with these organizations to help them better understand 8K use cases and provide insights on the state of development and industry/consumer needs for 8K. We may also support demonstration of the use of 8K content in the validation and specification of these emerging standards.
The 8K Association has developed a Certification program for 8K TVs which is designed to give consumers some comfort in their 8K TV buying decision. The program specifies a high level of audio and visual performance as well as interfaces to support the playback of 8K content. Over 70 models from major TV brands have already been certified and consumers can see the 8K Association Certified logo in retail stores. We will continue to raise the bar on these performance and interface features and increase the number of TV sets carrying the logo.
The standards and best practices activities are coordinated by the Content & Distribution Work Group. The certification activity is managed by the Technology and Certification Work Groups.