ABI: 4K TV Thriving, But 8K Will Gain Ground

OYSTER BAY, N.Y.—Despite the dearth of high-res content, 4K TV will grow to become the mainstream TV format over the next few years, with worldwide sales reaching 233 million, a CAGR increase of 13%, according to ABI Research. The research firm also predicts that market acceptance for 8K TV will mirror that of 4K in which declining prices of TV models will spur consumer acceptance.

Samsung, LG, Sony and TCL have all launched 8K TV sets, which, depending on the display size, are currently priced between $5,000 - $70,000.

“The cost of 8K TV sets is far from affordable for most consumers,” said Khin Sandi Lynn, industry analyst at ABI Research. “This will limit the sales volume for the foreseeable future, however, we can expect the price points to decline to a more reasonable level over the next several years, just as 4K sets have.”

Content for 8K sets is far scarcer than for 4K, ABI notes, with only Japanese broadcaster NHK currently providing 8K content via its “Super Hi-Vision” format. Korean Broadcast Corp. (KBS) and European streaming provider Rakuten have both announced tentative plans to offer 8K content sometime in 2019. 8K also requires much larger files and bandwidth and ABI thinks that the next generation VVC format (versatile video coding)—which offers 34% higher efficiency over HEVC—will “play a vital role” when standardization is completed in 2020.

Tom has covered the broadcast technology market for the past 25 years, including three years handling member communications for the National Association of Broadcasters followed by a year as editor of Video Technology News and DTV Business executive newsletters for Phillips Publishing. In 1999 he launched digitalbroadcasting.com for internet B2B portal Verticalnet. He is also a charter member of the CTA's Academy of Digital TV Pioneers. Since 2001, he has been editor-in-chief of TV Tech (www.tvtech.com), the leading source of news and information on broadcast and related media technology and is a frequent contributor and moderator to the brand’s Tech Leadership events.