What is 4K2K TV?
When Apple first launched iPhone 4 with Retina display, it seemed obvious that consumers actually do appreciate the higher resolution. As a result, the same thing has happened with the tablet, notebook, and even TV. The spec of 4K2K TV resolution is mainly 3,840 X 2,160. Compared to Full HD TV, which has a resolution of 1,920 X 1,080, the resolution of 4K2K TV is 4 times higher than Full HD TV.
The Japanese government plans to launch the world’s first 4K broadcast in July 2014. It is likely that the first 4K program will be the FIFA World Cup in Brazil. 4K2K TV could be the high spot of TV in 2014.
China is the main market of 4K2K TV and Taiwan is the major panel supplier
Taiwan panel makers expect global 4K2K panel shipments to grow to 18mn units in 2014, up from 2.8mn units in 2013. This implies about 7% penetration rate of total panel shipments in 2014, up from less than 1% penetration rate in 2013. This growth is significant, and China dominates the market with around 75% market share, which means more than 10mn units 4K2K TV will be sold in China in 2014. In terms of the supply side, Innolux and AUO are the main suppliers that accounted for 80% of total shipments in 2013. Samsung and LGD will gain some market share in 2014, but Taiwan panel players will still account for 70% of total shipments.
Is LED usage for 4K2K TV more than Full HD TV?
Originally, 4K2K was designed for large-size TVs, especially 50 inch and above. Because China has become the major market, the mainstream models of 4K2K will be 40 inch to 50 inch in 2014. The ASP of TV in China is USD 1000 and in Japan/Korea is USD 2000.
As mentioned before, the resolution of 4K2K is 4 times higher than Full HD. As a result, 4K2K has lower transmittance than Full HD. In order to increase the transmission of display, TV makers either add DBEF (Dual Brightness Enhancement Film) in the backlight module or increase the number of LEDs used in backlighting.
DBEF is expensive and costs 1/3 of backlight module. Therefore, increasing LED usage for backlighting is the cheaper and easier option for 4K2K TV. Generally, 4K2K TV uses 30%~50% more LEDs than Full HD TV. For example, 30 inch ~ 39 inch LED TV with direct-view usually uses 40 ~ 50 LEDs. 4K2K TV usually uses 50 ~ 70 LEDs. The demand of LEDs increases due mainly to 4K2K ramp.
Cost still matters
However, the cost of 4K2K is still relatively high. 4K2K panel/TV cost is 1.2/1.5 times higher than Full HD panel/TV. In order to stimulate the penetration growth, the cost must be lower. As a result, higher efficacy of LEDs and lens are used in 4K2K TV, and the number of LED use could be less to lower the cost.