The Apple TV 4K is Coming. Here’s an Introduction to its New Technologies

Apple TV 4K showcasing HDR.

Okay, the Apple TV 4K will be available on 22 September. The Apple press release introduces us to two new terms: HDR10 and Dolby Vision. Dolby Vision is a premium version of video High Dynamic Range (HDR). So you may want to start reading up on these two HDR technologies—which are not the same technology we’ve become accustomed to in our iPhone photography.

Apple TV 4K showcasing HDR.
HDR makes 4K incredible. Image credit: Apple

Here are four great resources to get you started. The first explains very nicely what HDR is in the context of 4K/UHD TV. Articles #2 and #3 go into good technical detail on HDR10 and Dolby Vision. Finally, if you want to get really geeky with Dolby Vision, I’ve included a great FAQ at the end.

  1. Introduction to HDR by CNET’s Geoffrey Morrison
  2. HDR10 vs Dolby Vision: Here’s what you need to know about the HDR format war.
  3. Dolby Vision: Is it worth paying extra for the premium HDR format?
  4. Dolby Vision FAQ

For now, Apple TV 4K users are going to be exposed to more HDR10 content than Dolby Vision. However, Dolby Vision is something to be aware of since it’s supported on the Apple TV 4K. Consider the inclusion future-proofing.

Recently, I was on Chuck Joiner’s MacVoices and delved into the Apple TV 4K itself and 4K/UHD technology in general. If you’d rather watch and listen to what amounts to a 4KTV tutorial, here’s the video podcast. “MacVoices #17190: John Martellaro On the Apple TV 4K.”

Next Page: The News Debris For The Week Of September 11th. Robots and people as partners.

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John, you might want to point out to your readers that they aren’t going to see HDR color unless they have a 4k TV with HDR.

W. Abdullah Brooks, MD

One more thing.

My opening sentence should have read, “Your deep dive into HDR TV and its competing technologies is much appreciated, even by those of us who are not active TV content consumers, but appreciate understanding the underlying technology nonetheless “. I got distracted and did not realise that I had two competing versions of that sentence. Humans, and another opportunity for AI to assist. Another time perhaps.

At some point, it would be terrific if TMO could restore our ability to modify/correct spelling and grammatical errors in our posts. I miss those days.

W. Abdullah Brooks, MD

John: Your deep dive into HDR TV and its competing technologies is much appreciated, even by those of us who are not an active TV content consumers, but appreciates understanding the underlying technology nonetheless. As I read this piece and its supporting links, I noted that my son is in his ‘dacha’ behind the house reading, my daughter is out with friends, and my wife is decorating the house, and I’m working at my computer listening to classical music. No one is watching TV. Even when they do, most will opt for either an iPad or other computer device to… Read more »


So cute Apple finally 4 years later wants to join the 4k party, now that the ITU has standardized 8k. Will Apple ever lead on cutting edge features? Never, always a follower.

Lee Dronick

Geez kid, what does it matter that they weren’t first? 🙄


Obviously, Apple should have released an AppleTV 8K, to play all of the amazing 8K content that won’t be available for a few years. So what if the amount of 4K content is only barely starting to make 4K TV really relevant. Getting it done first is obviously better than getting it done really well. Right?