Still Talking Clients Out Of 4K? Good News – 8K’s Coming!!!

January 15, 2018 by Dave Haynes

Hat Tip Display Daily

If you are in digital signage and having a swell time explaining to clients why they really, really don’t need 4K when full HD is more than awesome for the task at hand, you will be bouncing in your high chair with word that 8K will start to be a thing this year.

Which, of course, means clients will start asking about doing their networks with even higher-spec’d displays.

The market research firm IHS Markit says in its Display Long-term Demand Forecast Tracker that the marketplace will see the first uses of 8K, though it qualifies that by noting more than 98 percent of the 60-inch and larger display market in 2017 is 4K. “Most TV panel suppliers are planning to mass produce 8K displays in 2018,” says IHS. “The 7680 x 4320 pixel resolution display is expected to make up about 1 percent of the 60-inch and larger display market this year and 9 percent in 2020.”

“As UHD has rapidly replaced full HD in the super large-sized TV display market, panel makers are willing to supply differentiated products with higher resolution and improve profit margin with premium products,” says Ricky Park, director at IHS Markit. “Year 2018 will become the first year of the 8K resolution TV display.”

The report goes on to say Innolux started developing 8K panels in 2017, and will be marketed through partners like Sharp TV and Chinese brands to start. It also says Samsung Electronics and Sony are driving the 8K market, and plan to release flagship 8K TV models in 2018. LG showed an 8K OLED at CES last week, but whether that ever comes to market is often a question with things shown at CES.

We’re talking TVs, not commercial display panels, of course. But what comes to TV – with the notable exception of glasses-free 3D and curved screens – tends to find its way to the commercial market, if there IS a market for the product.

8K would have, in theory, application in things like signage for medical research institutions and maybe some energy exploration companies with super-high detail seismic imaging. But for things like retail and advertising and pretty much everything else, it would be overkill and largely a waste of money if the viewing audience will typically be looking at the content from several feet away.

You can nerd out and read all kinds of deep or quasi science dissertations, but the simple version is that even 4K isn’t all that rational a choice unless the screens are looked at more like paintings in a gallery than TVs in a den. Unless you have super-hero eyesight, you likely can’t resolve the differences between Full and Ultra HD because you can’t see all those pixels from 10 feet away.

Going 8K means waaaaay more pixels than your eyes can’t pick up from across a room.

Then there are the other matters:

8K will come, and one day this argument will seem quaint, but 2018 is definitely not the year of 8K UHD. Please.


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