8K TV is failing to appeal to consumers according to Omdia’s latest research which I recently shared at the NAB show for my session focused on the reality of UHD deployments. Our exclusive research has found that just 2.7 million households worldwide are expected to have an 8K TV by the end of 2026.
According to Omdia, shipments of 8K TVs only accounted for 0.15% of all TV shipments in 2021. This translated to a little more than 350,000 units globally. Samsung shipped 65% 8K TV units, with none to Japan.
In 4Q21, 95,500 8K televisions were shipped, an increase from 81,900 in 3Q21 due to seasonality. Shipments were led by China, although Western Europe and North America saw significant shipments as well, despite an absence of 8K content.
It appears that 8K TVs have lost momentum especially when the following reasons are considered:
- With no convincing reason to buy 8K TVs (very little native content is available) the marketing is failing, numbers-wise.
- Shipments were weaker than in 4Q20 and even 1Q21.
- Samsung shipped 18% fewer 8K TVs than a year earlier.
- China will not drive 8K compared to North America or even Western Europe, despite the large set sizes. Price pressure is too high.
- We see no convincing market demand of further 8K service development. Even in Japan, where there is a true 8K channel (from NHK) uptake has been minimal.
Working the reduced shipment forecast through to households, we expect just 2.7 million households worldwide to have an 8K TV by the end of 2026.
No regions hit the level of 1% of households with a large enough audience to become commercially interesting. With TV providers struggling with the economics of 4K UHD, it really seems that 8K TVs small audience appears unattractive to content producers. It will be interesting to see how the market develops over the coming year. Omdia