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HDTV evolving

August 19, 2006

I’m sitting here watching the third round of the PGA Championship on CBS in high definition (HD).  First off, it’s about time CBS put their HD programming feed for golf in widescreen format (they usually show golf in 4:3 even on the HD channel).

Another thing of note is that when I turned on the TV (after Kaitlyn went down for a nap) there was one of Microsoft’s “PeopleReady” adds on TV.  This is the first TV ad I’ve seen in HD that’s actually using widescreen.  Most of the ads on HD broadcast TV (CBS, ABC, NBC, FOX, ESPN, etc.) are still in 4:3 format, leaving big black borders on the left/right of the screen.  OR the ad will be widescreen, but widescreen in a 4:3 format so they’ve added a black border on the top and bottom to go with the crappy borders on the sides.

WHY WHY WHY do advertisers think that’s a good idea?  You’re shrinking your products on the screen and wasting 15-20% of the screen real estate you’ve already paid for!

As I write this I just saw a Sprint ad that was full screen 16:9 widescreen too – good job Sprint!

Of course you have to be wary when you ask for.  One of the easiest way to fast forward through a recorded HDTV program’s ads is to watch the borders to see when the ads are over.  🙂

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