Sony's pre-CES event Tuesday night was a bit light on the actual hardware announcements, so far as these things go, but the company did let slip its plans to launch a new streaming service for Ultra High Definition video.
As with a number of the company's announcements from tonight, the details are still pretty light, but the service is shaping up to be something along the lines of a Netflix for Bravia TVs that lets users stream and buy 4K videos.
More information on the service as we get it.
UPDATE (3:58PM ET 1/6): Now that the dust has settled, there are a few more details available. ULTRA, as the app is apparently called, allows television owners can use to purchase and stream their content. Though it is reportedly an Android TV app, it’s unclear whether it will be available outside of Sony’s ecosystem. ULTRA is scheduled to launch later this year in the United States, so perhaps there will be a later launch associated with other providers where they too could use ULTRA - spreading the Sony Pictures Home Entertainment love around.
In essence, this is a way for Sony to ensure there’s 4K content available to showcase the capabilities of their 4K television sets. There’s no better way to solve the equation than offering up both sides of it, right? One imagines that the idea is to intentionally build a small groundswell and then point to that success so that others jump on the bandwagon.
Another point of contention is exactly how many titles ULTRA will actually launch with. The Verge reports that “there are supposed to be around 40 to 50 titles to start.” That, however, includes the likes of After Earth, Fury, Elysium, and Hancock - none of which are exactly selling points when it comes to deciding what television to purchase. Because, if we’re being honest, basically nobody out there is looking for a new way to stream Hancock.
Additional reporting by Rollin Bishop.