March 2023 will be Armageddon for the 8K industry in Europe.
New EU power consumption regulations will go into effect then — and the new power consumption limits required for 8K TVs (and microLED-based displays) are so low that experts claim no devices will pass. Not a one.
This effectively bans the sale of 8K displays in EU and will impact display makers and their ecosystem, as well as EU dealers and integrators in consumer and pro markets.
European consumers will have fewer choices than anywhere in the world. The 8K Association broadcasted a call-to-action for industry members to join together to reach out to EU regulators; it’s a chance to talk sense to EU regulators before the new regulation comes into effect.
The EU often takes into consideration any appeals by affected industries — but there are no current indications that this ruling might be evoked or even changed. At the moment, all EU member states seem to be tackling energy issues, a reaction to the war in the Ukraine and Russian energy policies. For example, Belgium now forbids streetside cafes to use the outdoor heaters which keep the streetside café trade warm during winter months.
The 8K Association says it supports efforts to reduce power consumption, but it also supports “a commonsense approach to developing power consumption targets based on realistic assessments of technical advancements in this area.” In other words, the association accuses the EU regulators of failing to consider 8K when passing their power concerns for displays and TVs.
The specific regulation offers an energy efficiency index (EEI) calculated based on the screen area and power consumption. 8K-UHD displays offer 4X as many pixels as 4K-UHD displays but– by March 1st, 2023– 8K devices will be required to consume the same power as UHD (4K) resolution devices. (Again: remember no current 8K TVs meet this level of power efficiency.)
The association argues this new regulation was set arbitrarily, without consideration for next-gen technology, without understanding of 8K and microLED display operation.
If the industry does not successfully challenge the EU, the regulation will shut down many parts of the 8K ecosystem. Consider the knock-on impact: The EU will not have the same access to 8K technologies and services as other regions do. EU consumers will be denied state-of-the-art devices and their 8K content. If there will be no EU consumer access to 8K content, European content creators will lose against worldwide competitors…
This EU ruling causes damage further along the 8K ecosystem. If you can’t have 8K displays, there will be fewer sales for 8K cameras made by RED, Black Magic Design, Panavision, ZCam and more.
Manufacturers building 8K kit for capture, encoding, production and streaming (like those who exhibit at IBC each year) will suffer—along with their sales channels.
Others affected adversely include industries involving high-end imagery, even scientific and medical visualization.
Imagine EU hospitals from Madrid to Bonn not being able to buy or use 8K displays for state-of-the-art medical imagery.
Imagine that– because apparently the EU regulators never thought about it.
The 8K Association call to action: