Samsung’s next wave of 8K TVs are likely to have numerous features to catch your eye, but one of the more important additions may be one of the simplest: an improvement to free broadcasts. The tech giant has revealed that its 2020 QLED 8K catalog will include ATSC 3.0 tuners with NEXTGEN TV to deliver over-the-air 4K programming, multi-channel object-based audio and “enhanced” content to US viewers. Your TV still won’t be used to its fullest potential, but this beats having to pay for cable or streaming services to get a live TV picture beyond 1080p.
It won’t be surprising if rival TV makers are also hopping aboard the ATSC 3.0 bandwagon. Still, this is good news for 4K TV adoption. Access to 4K in the US is still inconsistent with only some channels and shows using the higher resolution. This won’t get creators to release every show in 4K, but you won’t have to pay extra to enjoy it when available.