4K UHD Begins to Penetrate Sub-40-Inch Screen Market

08 May 2015

4K UHD increasingly has become a driver of growth in the flat panel TV category sets will experience staggering growth over the next three years.

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4K UHD increasingly has become a driver of growth in the flat panel TV category sets will experience staggering growth over the next three years.

According to recent tracking data by the NPD Group, U.S. 4K UHD sales accounted for more than 7 percent of the market’s overall revenue. Not surprisingly, the highest growth rate is occurring in larger screen 4K/UHD TVs — more than 70 percent of the 4K/UHD TVs sold year-to-date in 2014 were either 55” or 65” displays.  Availability of 4K UHD on screens smaller than 40″ will ramp up over the next few years.  The biggest near-term challenge: native 4K content remains scarce.  Nevertheless, consumers who are early-adopters are investing in “futureproof” 4K UHD technology to be ready when massive amounts of 4K content become available.

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Futuresource Consulting

Futuresource Consulting

Analysts at Futuresource Consulting believe that 11.6 million 4K TV units shipped in 2014, growing by a nearly 700 percent year over year. In Western Europe and North America, share of 4K demand in 2014 will represent 10% and 8% respectively, with demand expected to grow at a 72 percent combined annual growth rate until 2018.  China will account for a staggering 70 percent of worldwide 4K TV demand.

“4K adoption is forecast to grow quickly from 2015 onwards with over 100 million shipments projected in 2018, representing 38% of the total TV market, says David Tett, Research Analyst at Futuresource Consulting. “An indication that 4K is quickly becoming mainstream was the availability of many sets at discounted prices during last month’s Black Friday.

The market for ultra-high definition (UHD) panels globally is estimated to reach $30.4 billion by 2020, according to a new report from Transparency Market Research. The market for UHD panels is expected to reach 5.7 million units by 2020, reflecting a combined annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9.2 percent from 2014 to 2020. Globally, the UHD panel market was valued at $12.8 billion in 2013 and is forecast to grow at a CAGR of 12.6 per cent from 2014 – 2020.

The growth will be fueled by a number of shifting market dynamics including growth in the use of UHD displays in the commercial sector, as well as the broader proliferation of UHD TVs in the media and broadcasting industry.  Transparency Market Research noted that UHD TVs provide features such as wide dynamic range, high picture resolution and extensive color gamut to help in exploring new genres and entertainment fields.

The growing application of UHD panels in industries such as publishing, advertising and signage will combine with the emergence of other digital applications to fuel dramatic growth in the sector. Applications include the use of large UHD displays to show non-movie content such as sports or music events, in art and culture to preserve and display objects in museums, art galleries, etc.

Consumers increasingly are buying the 4K UHD value proposition.  According to a recent survey by the Consumer Electronics Assn., one-third of consumers (33 percent) may purchase a 4K Ultra-High Definition TV within the next three years; 44 percent said they are likely to purchase a “smart” or Internet-enabled TV — a function commonly available with 4K UHD televisions.  Although 54 percent of consumers ranked price as the most important aspect to consider when purchasing a TV, one-third of consumers planning to buy a television will seek to increase screen size (38 percent) or improve picture quality (31 percent). When asked which top features will drive their next television purchase, 27 percent of the survey’s respondents ranked 4K UHD capability as the second-most important feature, followed by picture quality (24 percent), a key benefit of 4K UHD TVs.

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