TV Answer Man, the season doesn’t have many weeks left. Is there any chance that Fox or one of the other networks will start doing the games in 4K? And what about the Super Bowl? Will that be in 4K? — Penny, Omaha.
Penny, you’re right. There has not been a single NFL regular season game in 4K this year. In fact, the networks/services that have game rights — NBC, CBS, Amazon, the NFL Network, ABC, ESPN and Fox — have never done a regular season NFL game in 4K.
However, there has been hope within the 4K community that Fox would change that this year. The network has been more bullish on 4K than most others, offering one NFL playoff game a year in the format as well as numerous college football and basketball contests in 4K. Fox this month is also doing the 2022 FIFA World Cup from Qatar in native 4K. (Fox upscales its 4K college games, meaning it produces the event in 1080p HDR on site and upgrades it to 4K HDR for the home transmission. Native 4K means it’s produced on site in 4K as well as transmitted home in 4K.)
Since there are just eight weeks left in the NFL season, I asked Fox this week if the network had plans for any 2022 regular season games in 4K. I also asked if the Super Bowl will be in 4K. (Fox has the broadcast rights to this season’s Super Bowl and the network is still the only one to ever do the league’s championship game in the format.)
A Fox spokesperson tells the TV Answer Man that there are no plans to produce a 2022 NFL regular season game in 4K. So we can put that one to bed. Sorry, Penny.
UPDATE: Fox on Friday (November 18) said its original statement was in error. The Cowboys-Giants game on Thanksgiving game will be in 4K. See this article for more details.
As for the Super Bowl, the Fox spokesperson said the network is not ready to make any announcements regarding the 4K coverage of that game and the rest of the NFL playoffs.
I think you can take that as a positive sign that Fox will do the Super Bowl in 4K, as it did in 2020. If it were not planning to do so, it would likely just say that, as it did for the regular season games.
But the TV Answer Man will monitor this situation and report back here if, and when, an announcement is made.
Happy viewing and stay safe!
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— Phillip Swann