Ultra HD Blu-ray discs announced, for when you can't stream 4K

Remember when movies and TV shows used to come in physical formats? No? Well, before everything was available to stream, we had these discs called Blu-rays, and before that they were DVDs. Sure, they're a step backwards compared to the convenience of streaming we have now, but as 4K becomes the standard of high-definition, your internet bandwidth may not have the chops to keep up. That where the new format of Ultra HD Blu-ray aims to step in.

The organization behind Ultra HD Blu-ray, the Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA), announced the completion of this format this week, and offered up details on the specs of the technology. Discs will be able to handle a ratio of 3840 x 2160 pixels, or 4K, along with high dynamic range content and frame rate expected to be as high 60fps.

As for storage, a dual-layer UHD Blu-ray disc can hold 66GB of data, while a triple-layer disc can store 100GB. Standard Blu-ray discs are capable of 25GB on single-layer and 50GB on dual-layer. This space will allow the new format to provide what the BDA calls "consistent" and "repeatable" movie-watching experiences. New audio formats to be supported include Dolby Atmos and DTS:X.

But don't think you'll be able to watch UHD Blu-ray discs on the player you already have. Of course you'll have to buy a new one. These players are expected to hit the market this fall, but thankfully they will be backward-compatible with the existing Blu-ray format.

SOURCE Blu-ray Disc Association