The television makers' race for for ever more pixels continues at the IFA in Berlin, Germany with Sharp Corporation's presentation of an 8K model that will soon be in stores around the globe.
Once again, Sharp Corporation, a pioneer in the development of 8K technology, has made a splash with its Aquos 8K series. The model exhibited in Berlin, which has a diagonal span of 70 inches, will shortly be joining the other TVs in the Sharp Aquos range. It will be made available first in China, where it is due to launch in October, then in Japan (December), Taiwan (February 2018) and finally in Europe (March).
Let's not forget that 8K format offers a resolution of 7680 x 4320 pixels; that's four times larger than ultra-HD and 16 times larger than HD. At this level of precision, the human eye can no longer distinguish pixels on the screen. So 8K represents a breakthrough, although this is not the first time that Sharp has presented an 8K display. It already launched one in Japan in late 2015. That said, the model in question is only available in a small number of Asian markets and is prohibitively expensive at a price in excess of $100,000. Samsung and LG, both of which have already presented 8K TV prototypes, could shortly be following in Sharp's footsteps.
At the same time, Sharp is also tackling the market for 8K PC monitors with a 27-inch 8K display that was also unveiled at IFA. Dell and Philips are already competing in this segment, so it is not clear how Sharp will fare given that the Japanese manufacturer has yet to announce a price for its product.
The emergence of 8K televisions is a technical advance, but one whose widespread adoption may be considerably delayed by a lack of compatible content. Manufacturers are counting on sports to help win over consumers. In a world first, the Olympic Broadcasting Services (OBS) already filmed coverage of the 2016 Rio Olympics in 8K, which was also compatible with virtual reality headsets. The leaders in this technological field, the Japanese, are hoping to help build up an audience for the format between now and the 2020 Olympics, which are to be held in Tokyo.
Take a closer look at Sharp's 8K TV: youtu.be/t7FSPbRoTnI