Sharp used the pre-IFA Global Press event last week to announce the price of its Aquos 70” display – at measly €11,199 for European buyers. The units will be in stores by the end of April.
The displays were announced at Berlin’s IFA show last August, and Sascha Lange, Sharp’s VP/Marketing & Sales, said the displays would be available throughout Europe and Russia this month.
Lange explained Sharp’s rationale: “It enables larger screens at home and the consumer wants larger screens at home. Ten years ago the typical TV was a standard 32-inch ‘Full HD’ TV. By introducing 4K, we were able to keep the same distance [between the viewer and the set] with a 4 x times bigger screen and you could install a much larger screen and it is happening, and now for 8K, where we double the diagonal again and put a 4 x times screen in the same space. 8K is the [base] condition to enjoy 70-inch screens at home, and 120-inch and 130-inch screens will become reality because 120-inch screen on an 8K TV has the same pixel density as a 32-inch screen, so an 8K large screen can easily replace the 32-inch.”
“You may say that there is not enough space in the living room, today a 70-inch or 80-inch cannot even fill a wall. The customer demand is there, the space is there and now the technology is there is as well.”
“In relation to content, why do we need 8K? We have to be honest, because at the beginning upscaling is the most important part of this television, so to make sure that all 2K and 4K content available today can be enjoyed – we developed upscaling technology.”
“Sharp is providing professional 8K cameras to studios. YouTube supports the hosting and playback of 8K content for more than two years and Netflix is shooting Lost in Space in 8K as well. NHK in Japan is test broadcasting 8K content for one hour a day and we will shoot the French Open in conjunction with France Televisions.”
Lange said that Sharp’s new 8K cameras (showcased at NAB earlier in April) can handle 60 fps but consume 1 TB of storage for every 10 minutes of video.
Quite how many of these test broadcasts will actually be transmitted is as yet unclear. NHK will add daily content in 8K from December 1st this year.