China has successfully realized 8K ultra-high-definition content transmission through 5G networks for the first time, China Daily reported.
The 8K UHD signals were transmitted from the headquarters of China Media Group in Beijing to display terminals at the venue of the Mobile World Congress 2019 in Shanghai on Wednesday, the report said.
The test was carried out by CMG together with China Mobile, China Unicom, Huawei Technologies, China Ultra-high-definition Industry Alliance and Sumavision Technology Group.
The quality of the TV signals and low latency of the transmission, which ran at 320Mb per second, were highly spoken of by spectators at the CMG showcase booth set at the MWC 2019 venue. 8K is 7,680 by 4,320 resolution, or approximately 8,000 horizontal pixels, effectively quadrupling the total number of pixels in standard 4K.
China has officially rolled out commercial 5G licenses to the nation’s three major telecom carriers — China Mobile, China Telecom and China Unicom — as well as the State-owned China Broadcasting Network Corp earlier this month.
Jiang Wenbo, a senior executive of CMG, said that the successful test proves that 5G networks, which has the advantage of low-latency, high-bandwidth and high-reliability communications offer excellent technological support to the extensive application of UHD TV.
According to The Verge, pairing a fast 5G connection with an 8K display could theoretically be a way of overcoming the difficulties of streaming data-heavy 8K content without requiring a high-speed fixed-line internet connection at home.
Potentially, Huawei could use these 5G TVs to build out its ecosystem of consumer electronics, similar to what Samsung already has with its lineup of TVs, smartphones, wearables, smart home devices and appliances, the report said.
Televisions are famously low-margin products to sell, and the average consumer’s TV upgrade cycle is a lot longer than it is for laptops and smartphones. Clearly, it is still very early for both 5G and 8K, as 5G networks are currently only available in a limited number of locations and native 8K content will be a rarity for some time.
Speaking at this year’s 8K Display Summit and quoted by WhatHiFi.com, Sonia Chen, director of display marketing at Samsung Electronics’ Device Solutions America, said: “With the rapid expansion of 5G wireless network technology, [the] 8K display market is expected to make great strides. In particular, it will receive the spotlight among the millennial generation who are familiar with fast internet speeds and high-quality image viewing.”
Chen described 5G as a “mega trend” that would command displays with bigger screens, better picture quality and higher resolution.
Meanwhile in Japan, broadcasters have been experimenting with 8K TV for some time, WhatHiFi.com reported. Back in 2015 the Japanese Broadcasting Corporation, NHK, ran a series of successful 8K trials and went on to launch the world’s first 8K television channel. Since December 2018, it has broadcast 8K TV shows on a daily basis, 12 hours a day.
Japan is also aiming to deliver 8K broadcasts in time for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.