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iPlayer HLG/UHD HDR on Samsung’s J and K Series TVs


So, of the nigh on 400 TVs supported in BBC iplayer for the Blue Planet II  HLG episodes none are from Samsung. Oh joy. 


Moderator edit: Original thread title was "Blue Planet 2 HLG - No Samsung". With the OP's permission, the title was changed on 12/03/2018 to accurately reflect the dominant theme of the thread as it has progressed. If the reader would like to know more about the HLG format, please check out the BBC's page and FAQ's on it here: Thank you, AntS.

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When Samsung said they were support 2016 TV's with HLG support they DID NOT differentiate between the different HLG (if there are any), and certainly did not say except BBC Iplayer, even though the standard was out then. It really is not good that the so called premium Samsung TV's have spectacularly failed, to such an extent that the BBC removed you from the list. 

So why are you not supporting your 2015, and  2016 TV's?


It also begs the question, are you going to drop support for 2017 TV's in January? Because I bought my KS at exactly this time last year. Now where am I? Sat with a £1500 quid TV set that the manufacture is refusing to support.


Samsung you should look at EU best endevour laws. I believe that you are breaking them by not support a high valued goods like a £1000+ tv set for a reasonable period of time.


Hi @AntS . Thank you for the confirmation.

As a very dissappointed owner of a 2015 js8000 TV I'd like to get an honest and full answer to the question posed by Samsung's statement "We have no plans at this time to enable the UHD Version of BBC i-Player on 2014, 2015 & 2016 UHD TV or UHD BD Players.”


Why are there no plans to enable HLG on 2014/15/16 models?

Is it to do with the internal electrics of these earlier sets? Is it an impossible task to process HLG on these sets? What is the actual issue concerning iplayer and OTA  4k  HLG?

Even if HLG iplayer is a technical impossibility, Why has the iplayer NOT been updated to at least play the test in 4k without the HLG?

Will the iplayer be updated to play in 4k without HLG (like netflix did until the update in June included the HDR)?


I know that's a lot of questions to ask, but their scant statement really does leave me, and other early adopters, with a bitter taste in our mouths.

I'd really be most grateful if you could pass these on to the people who matter and see if they could offer some hope to us and restore my faith in their company.

I have the ks7000 model which supposedly supports hlg broadcasts.
If I buy the ROKU 3810EU streaming stick would this work with blue planet 2 on iplayer and show it in 4k UHD hdr hlg format?
Want to know for sure before I go and buy one.

The reason why I  suspect they are breaking European law is because they confirmed they were supporting all 2016 SUHD TV's HLG broadcasts. They must have know they had a problem with the Iplayer standard, yet never informed their customers that the TV was not compatible with BBC Iplayer, who at that time were the only broadcasters planning to test HLG. It is also telling when you read the Trusted reviews that of all the TV manufactures asked about HLG support it was only Samsung who said they would be supporting all 2016 TV's (as I said they must have know the BBC Iplayer standard and therefore must have known they could not keep that promise of support). I think by saying they would be fully supporting their SUHD 2016 TV's, was pure and simple for a market advantage over the other manufactures ( I think they also might have an issue about making false statements to give them an advantage), and is not truthful. That is miss selling!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And this is an sensible reply



Phil whilst I agree with your sentiment you are making the mistake of believing samsung when they say there is something fundementally different about Iplayer and the HLG standard, there is not. The BBC are not creating two implementations of HLG, there is one that they will use for everything. IPlayer HLG IS HLG. It's the standard the BBC made in conjunction with NHK. Not only that but it is supported by HDMI 2.0b. There is zero reason that 2015/2016 and 2017 sets cant all support this.



@amokuk wrote:

Phil whilst I agree with your sentiment you are making the mistake of believing samsung when they say there is something fundementally different about Iplayer and the HLG standard, there is not. The BBC are not creating two implementations of HLG, there is one that they will use for everything. IPlayer HLG IS HLG. It's the standard the BBC made in conjunction with NHK. Not only that but it is supported by HDMI 2.0b. There is zero reason that 2015/2016 and 2017 sets cant all support this.


What we need is an explanation from Samsung what the issue is!  HLG and BBC Iplayer were announced at the same time if I remember rightly. The standards must have been released to the manufacturers earlier than that. This is why I think we have been miss lead by Samsung because they must have known their TV's could not show Iplayer last year. By saying they would be fully supporting HLG whilst other manufactures kept quite, would have given Samsung a market advantage. There is nothing wrong in that as long as their TV's can actually meet their sales pitch. Advertising comes in all types, and one is by informing the trade magazines Trusted reviews, What Hi FI), of capabilities which are now being shown as untruthful. If it seem's that their 2017 TV's also can not show Iplayer, that might be the reason the 2015 and 16 TV's cannot as none of there TV's can show Iplayer. Might be why the BBC removed ALL Samsung TV's from their list of compatible sets! If that is the case then we all have an issue with Samsung!!!!!!!!!!!



Its all well and good quoting Samsungs current stance on HLG and iPlayer. What his doesn't say is why they are NOT updating their older TV's with iPlayer HLG support. It can't 'just' be because its not being 'broadcast' as youtube app supports and plays HLG content in HDR. Bsically it feels that Samsung don't want to support it via iPlayer, not that they can't because its in their own personal interest to make these TV's become 'obsolete' quicker so that they sell more TV's yearly. They don't want you to keep your TV for 5yrs or more - until it breaks down out of any 'extended' warranty that you may have and then replace - as was the case with most people.


It seems they want to make TV's like Mobile Phones that you replace/upgrade every 2-3yrs - especially if the Picture and HDR performance is 'decent' enough and the 'newer' TV's don't have 'much' improvement - a small increase in the Colour Gamut and slightly improved sustained Peak Brightness (at the expense of overall Peak Brightness). Why would I bother to buy a 2018 model if it supports HLG, HDR10 and HDR10+, especially if HDMI2.1 and its 'complete' feature set aren't ready for 'commercial' TV's until 2019+. I know some features could still be added under HDMI2.0 assuming they don't exceed the 18Gbps bandwidth.


HLG is co-designed with NHK and I can't see why the BBC would use something different to their 'broadcast' HLG - assuming they even have a 'platform' to broadcast HLG content on. That may rely on STB like SkyQ, BTTV or Virgin V6 to offer 4k HLG content and most likely via their 'on-demand' options or via 'red button' (like SkyQ's 4k content). I doubt it will be OTA but via streaming/internet. It doesn't bode well for other channels if/when they opt to offer 4k HLG content too - the likes of channel 4, ITV etc. With any luck, external boxes may well be able to send the HLG to the TV and work properly but if not, then we have a ridiculously over-priced TV that's very limited compared to its rivals.


Samsung has already seen its market share drop significantly this year with LG, Sony and TCL increasing. Those of us who have bought 4k Samsungs in recent years are less likely to buy Samsung again with things like this. I bought a HU7500 believing Samsung when they told me it would be 'future proof' as they would keep it u to date via the Evolution Kits - within 2years though, it was obsolete and the last SEK's weren't even readily available or, according to Samsung, not even released in the UK. Less than 2 years after replacing the HU7500 with a KS8000, its looking like Samsung yet again cannot keep its TV's current - yet its other 'big' Premium rivals of the time are supported. The Q series are not 'radically' different from the KS series - a different OCB because it needed to be powered to get the 'clear' cable, but apart from that and the 'cosmetic' differences, they are essentially the same.


As others have said, they know Samsungs current plans with regards to iPlayer and HLG support but that doesn't explain why its not possible, why last years (and 2015 TV's for that matter) Premium quality TV's are not being supported when even Samsungs 2017 'basic' HDR TV's are. No disrespect to MU owners but these are not Premium 4k HDR TV's.


Samsung may well of made the KS TV for 2016's market but these were still 'current' until March 2017 effetively as the Q series was only demoed at CES in Jan 2017 prior to its launch. Samsung had stated that the 2016 TV's would get HLG and even at CES, they expected the KS series at least to get HDR10+. With statements like this, People may well of bought a KS series expecting it to get the same support as the Q series. The Q series literally being the 2017 KS with the usual 'annual' cosmetic changes and maybe slightly improved HDR performance - after all UHD Premium TV standards are the 'minimum' requirements - not necessarily the optimum or even full standard so annual improvements can be expected in this area. Its no different to the B6 and B7 for example - improvements to HDR performance but essentially the same - and BOTH support iPlayer HLG.


I can understand why my HU7500 was not 'future proof' when HDR came along. It wasn't built to deliver the wide colour gamut or contrast ratio that HDR offers but my KS8000 has that capability. I can understand why Dolby Vision isn't supported but I cannot understand why HLG is on Broadcast and youtube but not on iPlayer when 2017 Samsungs as well as 2016 competitor HDR TV's are - unless Samsung are deliberately not supporting it because they want the 2016 TV's to become out-dated so that customers feel forced to upgrade.

@AntS wrote:

@Phil12 wrote:

Hi Ant


Could you please update us on this fiasco.  


Regarding the 2017 range and Blue Planet II: "We are working closely with the BBC to enable our 2017 Samsung UHD models (MU & QE) to access the service."



The statement above is now out of date as we know the BBC have removed every Samsung TV from the supported list, so what is happening exactly.





Hi @Phil12.


Us moderators asked for some clarification and confirmation on this for you guys.


As regards 2017 UHD TV, the current statement is:


“We are working with the BBC to provide access to this service and hope to have it available soon.  It is not expected to be available in time to view the current BBC UHD Content (Blue Planet II), but is expected to be in place for any future content offered by The BBC.”


That ties in with the BBC’s statement (as provided by JAMES4578): "Blue Planet II in UHD is available on BBC iPlayer on over 200 devices until 16 January 2018. If Samsung update their firmware in this timeframe, we can make the series available on these devices too."


As regards 2016 UHD TV:


“We have no plans at this time to enable the UHD Version of BBC i-Player on 2014, 2015 & 2016 UHD TV or UHD BD Players.”




“We have enabled all 2016 UHD TV with UHD HDR HLG for Broadcast Services as promised (Ensure latest Firmware is installed).  It must be noted this does not include IHD HDR HLG Content delivered via the BBC iPlayer Application as this is not a Broadcast Service.”


That is the current situation on both 2017 and pre-2017 TVs. As much as I’d like to, I’m unable to add more for you all. However, I will let you all know if anything does change on the Samsung end on either of those.


@amokuk wrote:

Do any samsung employees or anyone connected with samsung read their own forums? 

Hi @amokuk.


We do. And other people besides me are aware of this thread. Please keep on contributing. (Preferably sensibly.)

Hi @AntS


Thank you for the update, although it is more of the same, of course I'm aware you can only report what you are allowed to report.


Re: 2017 models, it would be nice to have an explanation as to why these TVs were included on the iPlayer list for testing, which as we believe from some information from the BBC were included as they had working firmware, are now off the list awaiting a firmware update which will not arrive in time to test.  This means there must be some problem, what is that problem?  The concern will be I'm sure by many owners following up on this, that by the time iPlayer has more 4K UHD content, the 2018 models will be out and support will be dropped on 2017 models in the same way today Samsung confirm 2016 models are obsolete and not supported.


Re: 2016 models,  HLG is a BBC technology, and as per their first test, it has been clear the BBC will stream HLG via iPlayer as they have no other way of delivering it at this time, yet Samsung will not support this saying they already support broadcast HLG and that's your lot.  What broadcast platforms will these models support then for HLG? What about 4K on iPlayer in SDR, will that be supported?  I don't have a 2016 model TV but if I did I would be looking at getting a refund, and this is a battle unfortunately a lot of Samsung TV owners are now going to have to consider and face.  Samsung don't think their customers are deserving of any explanation, is it a hardware problem, or is it they just don't want the expense of supporting past models? 


Very disappointing and this will no doubt come back to haunt Samsung.  They are in a competitive market competing against manufacturers who have updated even older TVs to support iPlayer which makes them look very poor in comparison.  Essentially all of Samsung’s 2016 range of TVs in the UK are now officially obsolete.





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