Consumers in the UK are now buying more 4K UHD TVs than they are Full HD TVs, according to research conducted by GfK. The rise of UHD is attributed to the falling cost of the high resolution TVs, with bargain basement options now on offer to consumers in the UK.
A 43in 4K UHD TV can now be picked up for as little as £300 at major retailers in the UK. That’s still more expensive than the equivalent Full HD TV, but the difference is only marginal, and users are willing to spend a little bit more to stay up to date with the latest technology. There are also a greater number of 4K UHD TVs being offered by manufacturers than Full HD, with retailer Currys PC World offering 160 4K UHD TVs and just 60 Full HD TVs.
“UHD is now the dominant HD type. That is unequivocal,” says Nick Simon, account director, consumer electronics at GfK. Despite Brexit, consumers are still largely carrying on with their purchases of large screen TVs, although consumer confidence has been dented, he admits.
While 4K UHD TVs are now affordable enough for the vast majority of consumers to afford, Nick notes that as a whole the market will likely see price increases in 2017. In 2016, the proportion of models that had seen price cuts of 40% of more amounted to 21.3%, while this year the proportion showing price cuts of 40% or more is only 0.2%.
The growth of the television market may not continue in the future, however. Nick warns that shifting viewing habits among 18-34s could cause problems for the industry in the future, with only 49% preferred the TV as a device to watch content. This compares to 88% of the over 55s. Younger generations are increasingly watching TV shows and movies on mobile devices and computers.
Given the lack of major sporting events, it’s unlikely that 2017 will be an especially bumper year for TV sales in the UK. Despite that, 4K UHD TVs are still expected to represent two thirds of the total revenue brought in, largely thanks to the decline of Full HD.