HERTFORDSHIRE, England—2018 was a banner year for worldwide TV shipments, according to a market report from Futuresource Consulting, earning the highest rate of growth for the decade at 6%.
In total, 227 million TV units were shipped worldwide in 2018, equating to a trade value of $85 billion. Futuresource identified a number of factors that contributed to this surge, including the drop in prices for technologies like 4K and a rise in production in South East Asia.
“Despite some localized macro-economic problems, which have caused significant shipment fluctuations for several countries, the world view is positive,” said Futuresource Consulting Senior Market Analyst Matthew Rubin.
TV shipments in BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and China) have helped lay the groundwork for this growth, as many households are upgrading their primary TVs. This has helped make up for flat or declining shipment numbers in Western Europe and North America; Eastern Europe, however, saw a 6% increase. While North America was essentially flat (a decrease of 0.1% in units shipped) it still saw shipments of more than 42 million units, which is close to its peak of 2011.
4K UHD TV shipments are expected to command more than half the market in 2019 as there is increasing standardization in TV sets 40-inches and above. Futuresource forecasts that the global installed base for 4K UHD TVs will exceed 960 million by the end of 2023.
Meanwhile, the next bump in resolution, 8K, is just about ready to start taking off. Shipments for 8K sets are expected to be just 0.1% of the market in 2019, but likely to see a growth to 2% by 2023. While Samsung and Sharp have been the major proponents for 8K models, most brands are likely to soon offer an 8K set of their own, while 8K content availability is also expected to make progress, though still with a ways to go.
“Barriers to uptake will begin to fall away and 8K will grow to form a significant part of the premium market by 2023,” Rubin said.