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Ultra high-def TVs still too expensive

Lucas Mearian | July 24, 2014
The price of a 55-in. UHD TV is expected to be around US$1,850 by 2017

At last year's CES, manufacturers unveiled 75 new UHD-TV sets.

LG's latest 55-in. curved-screen, OLED UHD TV. The retail price? $7,000. (Source: LG).

Steve Koenig, director of industry analysis for the CEA, said at CES that high-definition 1080p LCD TVs (HDTVs) will continue to dominate the market for the next several years. Televisions with 55-in. or larger screens, expected to be the best-selling models, will make up 66% of flat-screen shipments in 2017. UHD-TVs will represent 34% of the market in that year, according to Koenig.

Manufacturers have pitched several gimmicks to increase sales of UHD TVs, including 3D and curved screens, which experts say do little to improve viewing quality.

3D-enabled UHD TVs are quickly dropping away and there are no UHD plasma-display-panel televisions planned by manufacturers. UHD organic light-emitting-diode (OLED) TVs will be available at the end of this year. That technology promises larger, lighter screens with the ability to retain consistent color from even the widest of viewing angles.

Among UHD TV makers in May, China had the largest proportion of UHD TV shipments in relation to total LCD TVs, at 9%, followed by South Korea at 5% and Japan at 2%. South Korea, however, shipped more UHD TVs, thanks to the size and heft of its two makers -- Samsung Electronics and LG Electronics -- which also happen to be the world's largest TV manufacturers, IHS stated in its report.

The two South Korean makers accounted for 46% of total UHD TV shipments in May, compared to a combined total of 45% for the six makers of Chinese origin -- Changhong, Haier, Hisense, Konka, Skyworth and TCL.


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