Research firm IHS Markit says that viewers in Europe, North America and even in Eastern Europe, LatAm and the MENA region are adopting 4K/UHD at an accelerating rate.
Paul Gray, IHS Director Research and Analysis, Technology, Media & Telecom, told delegates at MIPTV today that the end of 2018 saw a huge milestone passed – for the first time, shipments of UHD TV sets exceeded that of lesser resolutions. “It has taken only five years: shipments broke one per cent for the first time in Q4 2013. This is as fast as the move from standard definition to HD resolutions.”
He also explained that the retail price of UHD displays is tumbling, “As an example, 75” LCD pricing reached new lows, with sets now available from €1300 – the threshold price for mass-market adoption.”
Gray says that globally there are now 142 4K/UHD channels on air (and not counting duplicate channels operating in different markets). The IHS channel count does not include so-called ‘pop up’ special channels which – for example – only cover World Cup football events.
Europe, as at Q1/2019 had 46 channels available.
IHS is forecasting that by 2022 almost 60 per cent of North American homes will own at least one UHD display. In Western Europe, the 2022 position is expected to be 40 per cent, although some markets will have higher percentage ownership of 4K sets.
Its forecasts also suggest that 75” ‘jumbo-sized’ 4K LCD displays will cost around $1000 by 2022-23. Even the currently highly-priced 8K displays will cost less than $2000 by the same period.
IHS forecasts that by 2023, the world’s viewers will be buying almost 150 million UHD displays. China will still be the most enthusiastic buyers, followed by North America and then Western Europe. Next year’s Tokyo Olympic Games will see a global surge of buying, with more than 130 million sets bought globally.