Google is jumping on the HDR bandwagon, as users can now watch HDR videos on YouTube with supported devices. Steven Robertson, a software engineer, and Sanjeev Verma, a product manager for Google, remarked, “HDR adds a whole new dimension of creative freedom and visual spectacle, and we've barely scratched the surface of what this means for storytelling. We can't wait to see the amazing videos you're going to make with HDR.”
Before and After HDR
What is HDR? HDR, or high dynamic range, improves the contrast ratio and color accuracy for displays. According to Google, “HDR unlocks the most spectacular image quality we've ever streamed.”
YouTube has worked with creators such as MysteryGuitarMan, Jacob + Katie Schwarz, and Abandon Visuals in order to bring beautiful HDR content. Jacob + Katie Schwarz recently published the a video, “The World in HDR”, that shows off the latest feature. YouTube has also collaborated with with the DaVinci Resolve team in order to make uploading HDR videos as easy as uploading regular SDR content for all YouTube creators. The company recently added the gear needed to create HDR videos at YouTube spaces in Los Angeles and New York City
YouTube HDR videos will be available on supported devices, such as HDR TVs with the new Chromecast Ultra. The videos will soon be available on on all 2016 Samsung SUHD and UHD TVs, and HDR videos will still be able to be played in standard dynamic range on devices that do not support HDR.
The Chromecast Ultra was just released this past month by Google. It not only supports HDR and 4K streaming, but it “automatically optimizes your TV's picture”, even if the device is not 4K-capable. The Chromecast Ultra also loads videos 1.8 times faster than other Chromecast devices and includes some significant Wi-Fi improvements. It is available for $69 USD at most electronics retailers.