Amazon: A Leader in the Evolution of 4K Ultra HD

Amazon recently announced that it will film all its 2014 original series in the 4K Ultra HD format.

Jan 2, 2014 at 11:00AM

Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN)recently announced that it will film all of its 2014 original series in the new 4K Ultra HD format. The 4K Ultra HD format will allow users to watch Amazon features in a resolution with four times the number of pixels displayed in the standard, full HD format. This will give customers a better screen image with improved clarity, sharpness, and smoother lines.

For 4K Ultra HD to really take off, the market needs a leader to move in the space and produce content. Amazon could be making that move. It would fill a void for tech-savvy consumers who own 4K TV hardware and are actively looking for content.

Amazon's continued investment in new technologies shows the company's commitment to be a leader in growing market segments. Investment in areas of growth include streaming content, tablets, and cloud computing. Investors need to understand that these continued investments in growing technologies are a reason why Amazon reported a net loss of $41 million in the third quarter of 2013.

Amazon is already showing amazing growth: The company reported $17.1 billion in revenue in the third quarter of 2013, which is a 24% increase over the $13.8 billion reported in the third quarter of 2012. Leadership in the 4K market should translate into expanding revenue for Amazon as more consumers adopt the new HD format.

Netflix has big plans for 4K Ultra HD, too
Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) has plans to stream content in 4K Ultra HD within the next year or two. The company has indicated that it has already recorded its original series House of Cards in the 4K format and hopes to make the 4K Ultra HD version available later this year .

Netflix sees streaming video as the best delivery system for 4K Ultra HD content and hopes to capitalize on the latest technology. Netflix is already showing serious growth: It reported $1.1 billion in the third quarter of 2013, a 22% increase as compared to the $905 million reported in the third quarter of 2012. The addition of 4K services should help grow the company's revenue as new customers subscribe to experience Netflix's 4K streaming service.

The question is whether Netflix or Amazon will be first to roll out 4K Ultra HD content as a streaming service. For Netflix to be competitive, the company will need to capture a lot of content licensing for 4K content.

Beating Amazon to market with 4K streaming services would give Netflix a strong foothold in the market, and Netflix is in a strong position to make the investment. The company reported net income of $32 million in the third quarter of 2013. Netflix's reinvestment in 4K technology could help pave the way for a market-dominating 4K Ultra HD streaming service.

Sony has 4K Ultra HD technology
Back in September, Sony (NYSE:SNE) launched its Video Unlimited 4K service, the first download service for the 4K Ultra HD format. The service was launched with 70 feature films and TV shows for rent or purchase on Sony's 4K Ultra HD media player. The launch served as a marketing tool to boost sales of Sony's 4K TVs and media player. Due to the limited availability of 4K content, Sony needed to launch the Video Unlimited 4K service to support the company's new 4K hardware.

Sales for 4K TVs and media players should increase due to the availability of content through Sony's Video Unlimited 4K service. Amazon and Netflix rolling out 4K content should also help boost Sony's 4K hardware sales. Sony can use the help -- sales for the third quarter decreased 9%, year over year.

Investors should watch for the release of 4K content from Amazon and Netflix and look for a possible boost in Sony 4K hardware sales. It's important to look for a correlation. This would be an indicator that Sony is capturing the 4K TV market and growing revenue as more consumers adopt the new HD format.

The bottom line
Netflix and Amazon are likely to be the leaders in providing 4K Ultra HD content to consumers. In the short term, 4K Ultra HD content services will mostly be attractive to tech-savvy consumers that have to have the latest and greatest technologies. The adoption of the 4K video format by Netflix and Amazon will help TV manufacturers market the next generation of TVs in the 4K Ultra HD format. In a very small market of 4K providers, Netflix and Amazon will likely become the go-to services for 4K Ultra HD movies and TV shows.

TV is changing -- Here's how you can profit from it
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Ryan Sullivan has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends and Netflix. The Motley Fool owns shares of and Netflix. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

4 in 5 Americans Are Ignoring Buffett's Warning

Don't be one of them.

Jun 12, 2015 at 5:01PM

Admitting fear is difficult.

So you can imagine how shocked I was to find out Warren Buffett recently told a select number of investors about the cutting-edge technology that's keeping him awake at night.

This past May, The Motley Fool sent 8 of its best stock analysts to Omaha, Nebraska to attend the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder meeting. CEO Warren Buffett and Vice Chairman Charlie Munger fielded questions for nearly 6 hours.
The catch was: Attendees weren't allowed to record any of it. No audio. No video. 

Our team of analysts wrote down every single word Buffett and Munger uttered. Over 16,000 words. But only two words stood out to me as I read the detailed transcript of the event: "Real threat."

That's how Buffett responded when asked about this emerging market that is already expected to be worth more than $2 trillion in the U.S. alone. Google has already put some of its best engineers behind the technology powering this trend. 

The amazing thing is, while Buffett may be nervous, the rest of us can invest in this new industry BEFORE the old money realizes what hit them.

KPMG advises we're "on the cusp of revolutionary change" coming much "sooner than you think."

Even one legendary MIT professor had to recant his position that the technology was "beyond the capability of computer science." (He recently confessed to The Wall Street Journal that he's now a believer and amazed "how quickly this technology caught on.")

Yet according to one J.D. Power and Associates survey, only 1 in 5 Americans are even interested in this technology, much less ready to invest in it. Needless to say, you haven't missed your window of opportunity. 

Think about how many amazing technologies you've watched soar to new heights while you kick yourself thinking, "I knew about that technology before everyone was talking about it, but I just sat on my hands." 

Don't let that happen again. This time, it should be your family telling you, "I can't believe you knew about and invested in that technology so early on."

That's why I hope you take just a few minutes to access the exclusive research our team of analysts has put together on this industry and the one stock positioned to capitalize on this major shift.

Click here to learn about this incredible technology before Buffett stops being scared and starts buying!

David Hanson owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway and American Express. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway, Google, and Coca-Cola.We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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