A new report by IHS predicts that by the end of 2017, most 50-inch or larger TVs will feature 4K resolution, and that 4K TV penetration will reach 34% by 2019 for the U.S. market.
The same adoption rate will be lower in Europe, only 25%, with the highest adoption rate coming in Switzerland, followed by the UK.
The Japanese adoption rate for 4K TVs will only be 14%, predicts the IHS, due to the fact that most Japanese homes already have a fairly new model HDTV, thanks to recent subsidy and incentive programs introduced by the Japanese government. Due to space constraints, Japanese households also prefer smaller television sets, making it more difficult for the average person to see the benefits of 4K.
Although most will still find the higher resolution picture more desirable even on smaller screens, only those with a larger screens will be able to appreciate all the increased details in the picture. But 4K TVs offer not only a higher resolution, more than four times the number of pixels as HDTVs, but a whole host of picture quality improvements including a wider color range and more dynamic picture.
These new features, however, means 4K TVs will attract a price premium, a premium that not all households will be able to afford or justify. This is why the adoption rate of 4K TVs in developing countries will be much slower, but with one major exception.
Watching television is extremely popular pastime in China, which is why the IHS predicts 4K TV adoption in China in 2019 will reach a high of 24%. This is extremely high compared to other developing countries such as India, where the 4K adoption rate will only be 2% by 2019.