4K UHD Smartphone Shipments Forecast to Reach 23 Million Units in 2015, According to NPD DisplaySearch

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Half of all smartphones this year will have high definition or higher resolution displays.

Figure 1: Global smartphone display-resolution forecast

Market growth for smartphones with high-definition screens is being fueled by increasingly affordable application processors, which are enabling brands to provide greater resolution and lower power consumption at lower prices.

In 2015, the first year that 4K, or ultra-high-definition (UHD), smartphones will become available to consumers, global shipments are forecast to reach 23 million units. According to the latest NPD DisplaySearch Smartphone Quarterly report, 4K displays will account for more than 5 percent of smartphone shipments in North America and Japan in 2015, and just under 5 percent in Western Europe.

Global smartphone shipments are expected to reach 1.2 billion units in 2014. With a three-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 13 percent, shipments will rise to 1.7 billion units by 2017. Although entry-level smartphones priced below $200 will account for 35 percent of total smartphone shipments in 2014, the average display resolution will continue to increase globally.

Global shipments of smartphones with high-definition (HD) and full-high-definition (FHD) screens are forecast to reach 570 million units in 2014. 2K displays (also known as wide-quad-HD) shipments are also expected to reach significant levels. NPD DisplaySearch forecasts 41 million units will ship in 2014. AUO, JDI, Samsung, and other display-panel manufacturers already have 2K displays in production, and applications processor and GPU (graphic processor unit) vendors have products ready to support and handle display resolution beyond 1080p.

All told, smartphones with HD and higher display resolution will comprise over half of global shipments in 2014, up from 29 percent in 2013.

“Market growth for smartphones with high-definition screens is being fueled by increasingly affordable application processors, which along with increased production of high resolution smartphone displays, are enabling brands to provide greater resolution and lower power consumption at lower prices,” said Tina Teng, senior analyst for smartphones at NPD DisplaySearch. “In the maturing smartphone ecosystem consumers can expect far better visual performance and improved gaming experience.”

The NPD DisplaySearch Smartphone Quarterly report analyzes the smartphone market by region, brand, air interface, technology, and mobile operation system on a quarterly and annual basis. It also provides analyses of the market and technology trends of the smartphone’s key components, touch panels, cover glass, and applications processors (AP). For more information, contact Charles Camaroto at 888-436-7673 or 516-625-2452, e-mail contact(at)displaysearch(dot)com, or contact your regional NPD DisplaySearch office in China, Japan, Korea or Taiwan for more information.

About NPD DisplaySearch
NPD DisplaySearch, part of The NPD Group, provides global market research and consulting specializing in the display supply chain, including trend information, forecasts and analyses developed by a global team of experienced analysts with extensive industry knowledge. NPD DisplaySearch supply chain expertise complements sell-through information from The NPD Group, thereby providing a true end-to-end view of the display supply chain from materials and components to shipments of electronic devices with displays to sales of major consumer and commercial channels. For more information, visit us at http://www.displaysearch.com. Read our blog at http://www.displaysearchblog.com and follow us on Twitter at @DisplaySearch.

About The NPD Group, Inc.
The NPD Group provides global information and advisory services to drive better business decisions. By combining unique data assets with unmatched industry expertise, we help our clients track their markets, understand consumers, and drive profitable growth. Sectors covered include automotive, beauty, consumer electronics, entertainment, fashion, food/foodservice, home, luxury, mobile, office supplies, sports, technology, toys, and video games. For more information, visit http://www.npd.com and npdgroupblog.com. Follow us on Twitter: @npdgroup.

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