Netflix trials 4K content distribution with El Fuente clip

Michelle Clancy | 05-11-2013

Netflix is testing the waters on the digital delivery of 4K UltraHD content, with an eye to fulfilling previous vows to offer 4K within the next two years.

A clip called El Fuente has shown up on the site, billed as "an example of 4K at 24 frames per second". And that's exactly what it is, offering a range of generic footage of children playing and the like, meant to give the company something to play around with while deciding how best to accommodate 4K in its stable. It runs for about eight minutes.

CEO Reed Hastings said during the third-quarter earnings call that Netflix wants to be "one of the big suppliers of 4K next year".

The trial will help Netflix solve the biggest conundrum for a digital streamer: 4K offers a resolution that is four times that of 1080p HD, requiring eight times the bandwidth to support it.