UHD will be the key for broadcasters who want to stay relevant in the near future


    Over the years, multimedia has developed to offer more quality and entertainment to viewers. The move from SD to HD viewing, the development of VHS to DVD, and the success of satellite TV over traditional cable are all examples of technological development creating new opportunities for entertainment providers and rendering others irrelevant.

    History has taught us that broadcasters who want to stay in business must keep pace with entertainment demands by technological advancement. In the very near future, Ultra HD television will be the next step for broadcasters to achieve this.

    The adoption of UHD broadcasting capabilities provides many advantages on both the business and quality sides of their offering. Here are five key benefits that broadcasters can enjoy when adopting UHD.


    UHD boosts viewer retention

    While SDTV used to be the primary home entertainment, that quickly changed when HDTV hit the market. By 2016, only 37% of US households were still watching in SD, which caused advertisers to reconsider their broadcasting choices.

    Today, we’re beginning to see the same trend. According to Statista, HD TVs have been steadily losing global market share to UHD TVs since 2017. While high-resolution TV sets (4K or higher) held a 45.5 per cent market share in 2018, they accounted for over half of all TV sales worldwide in 2019. Indeed, in a recent study by Gfk, UHD TVs accounted for 75% of the overall TV market in Germany.

    Broadcasters who do not want to lose viewers and protect their retention rate should seriously consider adopting UHD sooner rather than later. This will help them avoid becoming irrelevant in much the same way as the switch from SD to HD.


    UHD will be a key differentiator

    According to a recent webinar with IABM & Christiano Benzi, UHD sets are well deployed in the market - but are not yet popular among broadcasters. Despite almost 50% of TV sets in Europe and over 50% in the US being UHD compatible, most channels are still broadcast in SD and HD formats.

    There is a clear reluctance on behalf of most broadcasters who see the investment to be too costly. However, this is sure to change – as more sets become enabled, consumer demand for quality rises. As observed with HD vs SD viewing, viewers naturally gravitate towards better quality and soon avoid other channels that cannot match their standards.

    UHD viewing as the standard is simply a matter of time. Since most broadcasters are avoiding UHD, becoming an early adopter is an excellent opportunity for broadcasters seeking a key differentiator for their channels. This will make them more appealing to viewers and advertisers alike.


    UHD associates quality with your brand

    UHD offers some of the best quality available on TV sets. As mentioned above, it will be a crucial differentiator for broadcasters not only for providing the capability but also for quality. With few channels offering a quality of a similar standard, broadcasters who adopt UHD will begin to associate their brand with higher quality service and content.

    Broadcasters who would like to align their brand with quality will also receive support from viewers if SVODs are any indication. According to Futuresource, nearly a third (31%) of all subscribers to Netflix pay for its Premium UHD plan (up 6% in 2019). The total number of global 4K SVOD subscribers capable of accessing the content on their 4K TVs rose from 209 million to 384 million in 2020 as the support for UHD rose.

    This provides an opportunity for broadcasters to align their brand with quality and gain more viewers from their competitors simultaneously.


    UHD offers new content opportunities

    Many creators are turning to UHD and 4k. Only UHD and 4k can offer the same experience as the original film. This opens up the way for creators to manufacture content that can only be fully realised on UHD-capable broadcasters.

    The power of exclusivity cannot be underestimated. It attracts more viewers to platforms. The opportunity could exist for UHD-capable broadcasters, to gain exclusive UHD content in the future for creators who do not want to compromise.


    Advertisers will eventually migrate to UHD

    As far back as 2012, advertisers have begun a mass exodus from lower-quality broadcasting. Advertisers in North America are already advertising on HD channels more than SD. The same is expected to happen with UHD.

    Eutelsat research has shown that early adoption of HD in developing markets has directly led to an increase in revenue for broadcasters who invest in them. The early migration in developing markets towards HD increased viewership, making broadcasters who invest in HD more attractive to advertisers.

    It’s no secret that quality attracts viewers and advertisers alike. In fact, better quality has been associated with an 18% higher retention rate, with higher quality channel advertising also outperforming the same adverts on lower-quality channels.

    This likely indicates that advertisers will eventually migrate to UHD for greater returns than stay on HD channels. Similar to how advertisers abandoned SD for HD. UHD is an opportunity for broadcasters to get ahead of the curve and become early adopters.


    Lead the way, with Eutelsat

    As UHD broadcasting continues to gain momentum, broadcasters must seize the opportunities that lie before them. Only UHD can offer the quality, potential, and viewer satisfaction required to stay relevant in the market and grow.

    Eutelsat is fully prepared for UHD and 4k streaming. With our global fleet of satellites, we are the best choice for the future of broadcasting and quality home entertainment. Contact us today to find out more, or visit our website to discover which of our locations will serve you the best.