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4K HDR has been a buzz word for a while, but what exactly does it mean? Ahead of the release of the XperiaTM XZ2 Premium with 4K HDR display, we wanted to shed some light on a technological phenomenon that’s changed how we record and watch video.

So, what exactly does 4K HDR mean?

4K is a general term used by the industry to indicate the resolution of a screen and its pixel count, precisely 3840 × 2160 – a really big step-up from 1080p resolution most people are used to. Likewise, HDR stands for High Dynamic Range and is considered the next big thing for 4K TVs and 4K content.

While 4K is all about the pixel count and resolution, HDR had its beginnings in photography. HDR refers to a technique that amplifies the dynamic range of an image and the contrast between the brightest whites and darkest blacks. This in turn ensures the image gets as close as possible to how we see the world in real life, with everything looking more vibrant and jumping off the display.

Sony's Xperia XZ2 Premium
The XZ2 Premium boasts a 4K HDR display

Which Xperia devices support 4K HDR?

The groundbreaking Xperia XZ Premium was the world’s first1 smartphone with a 4K HDR display.  Drawing from Sony’s BRAVIA® TV technology, the Xperia XZ Premium plays 4K HDR content in breath-taking clarity, allowing users to experience content on their mobiles as they would with their own eyes.

The Xperia XZ2 was another groundbreaker. Marking another world first2, the device allows users to record breathtaking videos in 4K HDR on their mobiles, meaning you can capture reality with incredible contrast, detail and true-to-life colour in the palm of your hand.

Xperia devices remain the only smartphones to offer 4K HDR Movie recording, and soon you’ll be able to play the videos back on your smartphone in 4K HDR too. The recently announced Xperia XZ2 Premium, with its gorgeous 4K HDR display alongside 4K HDR Movie recording, gives users more contrast, colour and detail in every scene, bringing videos ever closer to cinema quality.

What about 4K content?

Companies are investing heavily in 4K HDR-enabled content. Streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime now offer content in the format and even YouTube has got involved by allowing members the ability to upload and deliver their own video content in 4K HDR.

With Sony’s Xperia XZ2 Premium, users can relish the 4K HDR offerings of Netflix and Amazon Prime, as the handset boasts the innate pixel-count and HDR compatibility to exhibit the content perfectly and beautifully.

1XperiaTM XZ Premium features a 4K UHD (2160 x 3840 Pixels) High Dynamic Range 5.5 inch display. Verified by Strategy Analytics’ SpecTRAX Service against the published display specifications for over 9800 smartphones. Correct as of the 16th December 2016.

2XperiaTM XZ2 captures and stores 4K HDR video with a colour depth of 10-bit in HLG format. Verified against the published video specifications of over 11,800 smartphones by Strategy Analytics’ SpecTRAX Service. Correct as of 25th February 2018. For more information on Strategy Analytics’ results go to: www.sonymobile.com/testresults/

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