China is Largest Buyer of 4K/UHD TVs

TV – An article in EET India discusses the uptake of 4K / UHD TV in the global markets. With more and more TV makers announcing UHD TV sets at lower and lower prices, the acceptance and the sales are going up strongly.

Digitimes estimates those TV shipments will reach 12.8 million this year and forecast that this number will grow to 68.2 million by 2017. While this seems to be good news for the display and TV makers, we have to realize that some or most of this growth comes from decreasing prices in the market. With Vizio now offering an UHD TV for under $1,000, this adoption may actually be even faster than Digitimes believes. With sales prices decreasing faster than planned, increased income also evaporates faster than expected.

NPD DisplaySearch sees the fast adoption of UHD TVs in China as the top reason for the success of UHD TVs in the market. Digitimes even claims that half of all UHD TVs will be sold in China throughout 2016. NPD DisplaySearch generally agrees with this sentiment and adds that these China-bound TV sets will be mostly low price models.

They also discuss that this uptake is happening despite the lack of 4K / UHD TV content. With the exception of streaming content over the internet and the compressed Blu-Ray disc content from Sony, watching anything on your brand new 4K TV is just upscaled content. So far this does has not deterred consumers.

The analysts see this as a change from the old wisdom that “the US drives adoption of new technology”. Of course China has a population over three times the number of the US, which helps a lot with sales. On this basis, the adoption rate may still be higher in the US, but from a business perspective, manufacturers will be paying more attention to the Chinese market than ever before. That new products should be released in the top markets first, is a sensible approach to business, nothing more. – Norbert Hildebrand