4K resolution TVs, also known as UHD, and Ultra HD have set out to take over your living room, PC, and gaming centre as your new visual experience. With very little entertainment support and a steep price, when will 4K be the new 1080p TV that everyone can run out and buy because they are firstly affordable, and secondly, they have decent support?
Starting off at $7500 (about R92393.63) back in August 2013, the Samsung F9000 released into the market at a staggering retail price. The flagship 4K TV with the resolution of 3840 x 2160 dropped to $6000 just two weeks after launch, and two weeks later it dropped by another $1000 to $5000. LG has also recently launched its LG SUPER Ultra HD 4K TV, signalling that the market is opening up to the idea of 4K technology.
In just two years 4K TV priced dropped by 85% worldwide according to NPD. Some 4K TVs launched at a whopping $18999 in 2012 fell to a low of $1999 come 2014. The cheapest 4K TV was sold in China for a measly $999.
Analysts predict that thanks to the fast adoption of 4K in households, the 4K TV will be in 10% of all North American households by 2018. At this rate, with the prices plummeting, this roll out could happen faster than anyone predicted.
Still, a 4K TV will still cost you around R10 000, which is not including a 4K curved TV that will set you back R18 000. This is still out of the price range of many who are looking to purchase a TV for under R8 000. For those looking to pick up a 4K TV under R10 000, LG is your product.
LG Still have the most affordable 4K TVs on the market. You can pick one up for under R10.000.00. Here are a few:
|LG -49” UB700T||LG49″UB830T||LG 49″ UF770T||LG 40″ UF673T|
|Dion Wired||R9 800||N/A||R9 750||R9 000|
|Takealot||N/A||R14 799||N/A||R8 399|
I still see a trend in consumers where they are more prone to purchase a new 4K TV rather than splurge out on the new curved 4K models. This could be due to high price points as well as lack of 4K streaming services, 4K satellite TV support, and the poor infrastructure in place to make 4K available through third-party downloadable media.
HD TVs took well over 6 years to reach affordability. 30” HD Ready TVs set you back R8 000 back in 2006, whereas in 2015 you can pick up a 48” for R5 999. I doubt that the same will be repeated for 4K as the starting price is much higher than the market setting for HD back in the late 2000s.
There are two factors to consider; what is 4K in SA? And what will 4K be in SA in 5 years? You are not just rolling out a new TV, you are rolling out a new visual lifestyle. Gaming consoles, media devices, and other devices lack the support. PCs might have the ability, but at what cost? To get 4K into more homes you will need to lower the margin of profit, decrease expenditure on manufacturing, and make services available to use the TV to its fullest.
R20 000 might not seem like the end of your financial security for some, but with zero support, the TVs might at first seem like an unattractive purchase. South Africa in itself will not be ready for 4K for a while. However, with figures showing a $250-$1000 price drops in 4K TVs over recent years, and LG’s cheaper 4K models, I would be confident in saying that 4K would be the affordable option soon, with the ability to purchase a 50” curved for around R12 000 – R15 000 in coming years, compared to a 40″ standard model for R10 000 now.
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