Samsung and LG launch 8K television battle
SAMSUNG and LG have launched a new battle for television supremacy with both companies to unveil 8K televisions at Europe's biggest consumer electronics show.
During its press conference at the IFA 2018, Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. is to announce its foray into 8K with the unveil of the Q900R QLED 8K complete with 8K AI Upscaling.
Available in four ultra-large screen sizes (65", 75", 82" and 85"), Samsung QLED 8K TV will feature several 8K-ready enhancements, including Real 8K Resolution, Q HDR 8K and Quantum Processor 8K, all created to bring 8K-quality images to life. The new Samsung QLED 8K will be available in stores from end of September*.
Samsung's QLED 8K with 8K AI Upscaling is a part of the company's long-term vision of leading 8K to the forefront as the most accurate and life-like screen resolution on the market.
But big questions remain whether Australia's notoriously slow NBN internet system will have the firepower to support 4K streaming, let alone 8K television.
Samsung Electronics Australia head of audio visual Hass Mahdi said the company was dedicated to the best possible home entertainment experience for Australians.
"With so many people buying larger TVs, the higher resolution rate can take picture quality to the next level, allowing you to sit closer but still see the content look just as it was intended, no matter the size or format," he said.
LG believes the market for 8k TV will grow to about 5 million units by 2022.
For consumers, the best news could be a drop in prices for 4K TV as the new kids on the block are rolled out.
LG is sticking with its OLED driven technology, arguing it will continue to dominant the ultra premium market for users who want the most vivid pictures with the deepest blacks.
It's 'world first' 8K (7680 x 4320) OLED TV was launched at IFA 2018 in Berlin.
The 88-inch 8K LG OLED TV features over 33 million self-emitting pixels.
4K resolution is 4096 pixels across the screen and 2160 pixels down. Most television screens promising to deliver a 4K resolution offer 3840 pixels across the screen.
4K TVs have eight million pixels, while HD screens show just two million.
LG sticking with OLED technology
LG predicts OLED TV shipments in the market will double in 2018 and reach over nine million units by 2022.
8K TV market is still in its infancy but LG believes the technology will drive changes in consumer demands - including the push for even bigger screens.
LG says OLED has been often referred to as the "next-generation display technology" because it emits its own light, eliminating the need for any kind of backlighting.
"LG's first 8K OLED TV is the result of technological achievement and the next evolutionary step in display technology" said Brian Kwon, president of LG Home Entertainment Company.
"4K OLED has played a role in reshaping the TV industry and LG is confident that 8K OLED will do the same."
Samsung, the biggest maker of TVs for more than a decade, believes its 8K TV, featuring QLED technology, will trump LG's.
It pre-empted its own launch, which will happen at 10am Berlin time today, with a giant billboard headlined 'Prepared to be amazed at IFA'.
Samsung is already enjoying solid success and rave reviews with its top of the line Note9 smartphone, which was launched in New York, along with the latest in the Galaxy smartwatch range.
The phone features a stylus which can be used to activate photos and drive Powerpoint presentations, along with an industry leading battery, a more powerful processor and staggering storage.
Samsung will no doubt share more on the Galaxy Note 9 story, but the focus will be on its new TV line-up, along with smart home technology including fridges, washing machines and PowerBot vacuum cleaning range.
Samsung has flown a group of journalists from Australia for IFA but officials were remaining pretty tight lipped ahead of the launch.
The eight course welcome dinner, however, could have been a clever touch, whether intended or not, to whet the appetite for the next salvo in the TV wars.
Samsung's Mr Mahdi said the 8K TV tech would open an opportunity for Aussie television fans who want to view the evolution of content into higher resolution formats.
"We want to improve the way Australians experience entertainment, whether through TVs that transform into paintings with The Frame, surround sound from a single soundbar, or the immersion of 75-inch QLED screens that have become the new normal for many households," he said.
In the end, however, the best news for consumers with all these new product launches might be just the fact that last year's models can only get cheaper.
The prospect of getting great 4K televisions in huge sizes for thousands less than when they were first released will be enticement enough for Aussies to upgrade, especially when you see companies like Foxtel announcing its own 4K streaming channel.
Australian cricket fans will be among the first to benefit from the huge jump in TV resolution, with the company planning to shoot all Australian Tests, One Day Internationals, and selected Big Bash matches in 4K for the first time.
The live cricket matches will be broadcast alongside documentaries, concert specials, and feature films on the dedicated 4K channel, which will be broadcast to satellite subscribers using Foxtel's iQ4 set-top box that has been secretly rolled out to customers since February this year.
Mark Furler is in Berlin at IFA as a guest of Samsung.