4K awareness rises, as HD TV take-up almost doubles
Staff Reporter | On 18, Mar 2015
Awareness of 4K is rising among consumers, according to new research.
4 in 10 US adults have now heard of Ultra HD TV, reveals a new survey by Leichtman Research Group. That figure marks a sharp rise of 30 per cent compared to a year ago.
The growing awareness will be welcomed by the VOD industry, as streaming services play increasing importance on improved picture quality. Indeed, Amazon and Netflix are both now filming all their original content in the format, with Amazon offering UHD content at no extra charge and Netflix using the appeal of higher resolution to charge an additional fee to US subscribers.
It marks the continued evolution of the TV world, which relies upon such technological advances to keep selling new models – 3D TV, for example, remains a selling point for manufacturers.
Awareness, though, needs to translate into demand for technology to become widely adopted. Demand, meanwhile, is partly driven by affordability. 4K is beginning to make headway in the market, with 26 per cent of those who have seen a 4K set interested in getting one (compared to 6 per cent of those who have not seen one).
Affordability remains an obstacle for immediate growth. Futuresource Consulting predicted that 4K TV sets would account for 5 per cent of the global TV market by the end of 2014, a share that will rise to 42 per cent by 2018. Samsung, meanwhile, have forecast that UHD TV sales will climb to 3.3 million by 2017.
Consumers have definitely bought into HD, though, with 81 per cent of households in the United States owning at least one high definition set – almost double the 46 per cent recorded five years ago. Then, 17 per cent of households had more than one HD TV. Now, more than half (52 per cent) have multiple sets.
Nonetheless, the growth has been relatively recent, as rising affordability – partly fuelled by the introduction of a new premium resolution – encourages consumers to upgrade their old TVs.
“While HDTV now seems commonplace in the US, much of the growth of HD has come in recent years,” comments Bruce Leichtman, president and principal analyst for Leichtman Research Group, Inc.
“Over the past five years, more than one-third of all US households got their first HDTV, and HDTV’s share of TV sets used in US households grew from about 24 per cent to 65 per cent.”