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NPD: 4KTV Shipments to Surge in 2014

23 Dec, 2013 By: Erik Gruenwedel

China dominates Ultra-HDTV market, with global demand exceeding communist country only by 2017

Despite a 3% decline in global demand for televisions, shipments of ultra-high-definition 4KTVs are expected to total 1.9 million units this year, rising nearly 700% to 12.7 million units in 2014, according to new research from The NPD Group.

Ultra-HDTVs offer four times the resolution of 1080p HDTVs (twice as many pixels in each direction, horizontally and vertically). The decreased pixel size of Ultra-HD TVs is supposed to improve picture clarity.

China will account for 87% of 4KTV units in 2013, dropping only slightly to 78% of units in 2014. This means that 4KTV shipments within China will lead all other regions combined by a factor of three in 2014. Eventually other regions will catch up, but China will remain the leading region for 4KTV shipments throughout the forecast.

As a result, 4KTV average prices are expected to fall below $1,000 in China during 2014, while the worldwide average remains over $1,100 and close to $2,000 in North America.

“Panel makers are planning for nearly 27 million 4KTV panels to be produced next year, while brands have somewhat more modest expectations for the end market, but there is a significant difference in outlook between China and other regions,” Paul Gagnon, director for global TV research at NPD DisplaySearch, said in a statement.

NPD said consumer demand for TVs improved slightly from the 6% decline in 2012. Total TV shipments should grow about 1% in 2014 to 229 million units, with LCD TV shipments rising to 220 million, or 96% of overall units. Plasma and CRT-TV shipments are declining rapidly, ending by 2016.

“OLED TV [organic light-emitting diode] technology is not expected to yield significant growth for two to three more years,” Gagnon said. “4K has therefore become a technology focal point in the interim.”

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