Futuresource: 4K/Ultra HD set to take over the living room | 4K/UltraHD | News | Rapid TV News
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2018 will go down as the year that UHD moves mainstream, accounting for nearly half of all TVs shipped worldwide by the end of the year according to a market tracking report from Futuresource Consulting.
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The report, focusing on the latest key developments and future consumer trends in 4K/Ultra HD, found that overall, as with HD before it, 4K/Ultra HD is being driven by TV display purchases. Futuresource says that calculates that by 2022 the installed base of 4K/UHD TVs will be three times larger than today, achieving 37% global household penetration.

The survey also revealed that one of the biggest gating factors to 4K adoption to-date, lack of content, is being addressed. Indeed, Futuresource believes that the amount of 4K/Ultra HD content available to consumers has grown significantly over the first half of 2018, with broadcast content helped along by a range of international sporting events with worldwide appeal.

In addition to broadcast, the analyst sees 4K/Ultra HD as presenting a window of opportunity for Blu-ray, calculating that up to 30 4K UHD Blu-ray discs are released every month and that player prices have now dropped into a sweet spot. Yet despite this, Futuresource cautions that uptake of 4K UHD Blu-ray players is slow, perhaps due to a lack of vendor initiatives and retailer support beyond the USA and Canada.

Another potential drawback to adoption is the small, if any, additional cost for UHD content run over subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) services which is contrary to positioning this as a premium product. The analysis also shows that 4K UHD digital transactional models are also experiencing a period of turbulent pricing, with service providers and rights holders alike are experimenting extensively with price points, content bundles and delivery mechanisms, creating a customer journey that could become disjointed and fragmented.

“With digital UHD it’s all about capturing a big slice of the audience as quickly as possible, attracting eyeballs and locking people in for the long-term,” explained Tristan Veale, market analyst at Futuresource Consulting.

“As a result, we’re seeing some aggressive promotions out there, with 4K UHD content available to buy at prices in line with the purchase price of HD movies. However, companies need to keep an eye firmly fixed on consistency, ensuring confusion remains at a minimum...February’s Winter Olympics in South Korea was broadcast in 4K UHD, thanks to the efforts of the Olympic Broadcasting Services and Japanese broadcaster NHK and over in Russia, all FIFA World Cup games were also shot in 4K UHD, delivered via satellite, cable, IP and OTT. These two sporting events proved to be ideal test beds for broadcasting the format and demonstrating its benefits.”