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8K TV Sales Forecast To Hit 430K In 2019, 4K OLED TV Soars Ahead

Sales of 8K resolution TVs will hit 430,000 units in 2019, from a standing start in 2018, according to IHS Markit. The business information provider forecasts a total market of 2 million units by 2020.

All this growth will be centred on 60-inch and larger screen sizes, with 65-inch TVs accounting for more than half of the volume, it says.
The bulk of demand for 8K screens is expected to come from China.

However 8K will not have an easy road to market, predicts Paul Hide, head of Market Engagement for trade body TechUK. “8K has no consumer awareness in the UK and Europe, with the exception of a tiny minority of techies and early adopters. It’s far too early to consider 8K as a commercially viable consumer offering. It has specialist B2B applications opportunities only at present in Europe.”

Retailers are equally sceptical. Marcus Harbord, General Manager at specialist retail store Martins Hi-Fi, told Inside CI: “It is potentially just another confusion, a smoke screen for potential customers in their decision making, in my opinion it doesn’t help anyone.”

The overall TV market, after suffering declining unit unit-shipment volumes in 2017, will have grown globally by 3.6 per cent by the end of 2018, with additional 1.4 percent growth predicted for 2019, according to IHS Markit data.

Of the 226 million TVs expected to ship in 2019, more than half will be ultra-high-definition (UHD) models, the majority of which are 4K. “Growth in the TV market typically is the result of more attractive retail prices for large-screen sizes and the continued commoditisation of 4K resolution, driving TV replacements and upgrades,” says Paul Gagnon, research and analysis executive director. “However, this growth through price compression has a negative effect on profits, so TV brands are actively looking for more growth from advanced TV models to improve earnings.”

It notes 4K TVs carry a premium of more than 35 percent at screen sizes where 1080p resolution is still an option, such as 40-inch to 49-inch TVs.

OLED is also booming. The market will jump 40 per cent in 2019, says IHS Markit, rising to 3.6 million units. Growth is currently limited by industry production capacity, one key reason why prices remain high. The most popular OLED screen size is 55-inch, but the market is expected to switch to 65-inch TVs by 2020, when new production capacity is optimised for larger screen sizes.

Quantum dot LCD TV shipments are forecast to exceed 4 million units in 2019, thanks largely to more aggressive pricing. “The high-end prices of non-QD-equipped LCD TV models and the prices of the low end QD-equipped LCD TV models have moved closer together,” notes Gagnon. “This extension of the quantum dot LCD TV lineup into more moderate price ranges effectively reduces the quantum dot premium to less than 100 percent at mid-range sizes, opening up the category to a larger addressable market of consumers.”

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