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Netflix plans to stream 'House of Cards' in 4K this spring to select smart TVs

Netflix plans to stream 'House of Cards' in 4K this spring to select smart TVs


Ultra high-resolution streams will be limited to a selection of new Netflix-ready 4K TVs

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Netflix will start streaming movies and TV shows in 4K soon, but only to certain TVs. "We're not naming specific manufacturers," Netflix Chief Product Officer Neil Hunt tells Stuff, "but we have several of the major TV vendors who are going to be producing 4K-capable TVs — they'll be announcing them at CES [in early January]." This means that the high-resolution streams won't be coming to all 4K TVs — just the select models that manufacturers work together with Netflix to support. Hunt says that the feature may "eventually" come to Xbox One and PS4, but notes that the standards necessary to enable 4K streaming are "just a a little premature" right now.

'House of Cards' will stream in 4K

Standards aside, the main issue Netflix faces in bringing 4K streaming to the masses is a lack of high-resolution material. A Netflix representative tells The Verge that the company plans to launch its first 4K content this upcoming spring, headlined by season two of its original series, House of Cards. "Multiple" other titles will be available alongside the show, but the representative was not specific. The company expects the first wave of content will go live as soon as the first Netflix 4K-ready televisions start shipping in the spring. As previously revealed, the company's award-winning House of Cards is shot and edited for 4K streaming. "Since it's going to take a while until there is a material catalogue in 4K, it's important for us to get out front and begin to push it," says Hunt. "Initially it'll be a set of sample offerings, not a big part of the catalogue ... I think we can be instrumental in beginning the shift of production towards 4K."

Update: This article was modified with additional information from a Netflix spokesperson clarifying that while manufacturers will announce Netflix 4K-ready televisions at CES this January, the first content will not start streaming until the spring.