Just when you thought that 4K is the next best thing in TVs, Sharp has a surprise for you. At IFA Berlin, Sharp showcased a 70-inch Aquos 8K TV. This 8K TV will first be launched in Taiwan, Shanghai, Tokyo and Berlin.
Planning a full ecosystem around it
The Japanese company has long been pushing 8K displays in Japan for industrial use, but now, the company has made it clear that it is very serious about offering the same technology to consumers. Thus, one can expect that going forward, 8K display technology will be among the main areas of focus for the company.
Sharp is not just content with selling 8K TVs; it aims to build an ecosystem around 8K, including storage systems, cameras, displays, etc. With this, Sharp hopes to ensure there is no dearth of 8K content. As a help to the company in Japan, the country’s public broadcaster NHK has promised to broadcast 4K and 8K footage.
“Sharp is also complementing its 8K TVs by accelerating development of 8K broadcast receivers, 8K cameras, and other 8K products to lead the world by establishing an 8K Ecosystem,” the company said in a press release.
Sharp also announced a partnership with Foxconn to flood the markets with its entire 8K ecosystem, including shooting video and photos on cameras, editing them, and then broadcasting all that content to the TVs. Both partners will also be testing an 8K TV with 5G connectivity to “revolutionise education, entertainment, social groups, security, healthcare and more.”
What to expect from the Sharp 8K TV
The Sharp 8K TV has a resolution that is 16 times better than full 1080p HD. Sharp’s TV supports Dolby Vision and HDR10, while brightness and contrast are set automatically for each frame. The TV comes with a built-in soundbar, including two groups of bass woofers, three groups of speaker drivers and four high-power speakers at the back for extra low-end grunt, notes Pocket-lint.
The Sharp 8K TV sports a Yamaha audio engine and DTS 2.0 technology, which according to the company, will be enough to give a cinema-like sound without the need of an external system. The TV is built using aviation-grade aluminum for the base stand, frames and lower bar.
Pricing and launch details
The Sharp 8K TV will be made available in China and Japan later this year and in Taiwan by February. For Europe, the Japanese company is repurposing its 70-inch 8K TV as an 8K monitor, which it will hit the markets by March. Though there is no information on how much it will cost, a source told the Nikkei Asian Review that the Sharp 8K TV range will start at about 1 million yen or about $9,000. Sharp previously released an 85-inch 8K monitor in Japan that cost more than $100,000, notes The Verge.
As of now, the Japanese company is not giving any sales numbers as far as the number of 8K TVs it hopes to sell by 2020. Sharp’s European CEO Bob Ishida told TechRadar that the company has not decided on any numbers yet. This seems to be the right approach, given that 4K is only starting to go mainstream.