3D TV Like Color Photography?

“3D TV is going to be like color photography.”

I could be misquoting, but I heard a game developer say something along those lines while I had the show X-Play on TV.

Initially I didn’t think much of the quote, but the more I ponder it, the more I disagree.

The leap from black & white to color photography required:

  • New and expensive equipment
  • Expensive film

Early adopters of color cameras also had to put up with horrid quality. However, the camera didn’t really change that much.

The leap from HDTV to 3D HDTV requires:

3D is only going to get better, I have no doubt about that. However there are two big hurdles in the way of current 3D dominance:

The glasses

If you already wear glasses like I do (the masthead isn’t just for show), you probably don’t want to wear a second pair of glasses over your first pair. It is really uncomfortable.

They put a limit on the amount of people who can watch with you. Only have two pair? Only two people can watch. It’s a massive inconvenience.

No more passive viewing. You can’t watch 3D TV and surf the web on your laptop, or do anything else.

No more walking through a room, and accidentally becoming engrossed in the show your brother is watching.

The glasses are a barrier.


I don’t know the statistics on how many people get motion-sick from 3D, but based on the circles I travel in, the number seems pretty high.

If your “provider of thy nookie,” as George Carlin so eloquently put it, gets motion-sick from 3D TV, I’m willing to bet that you won’t be watching much 3D TV.


Avatar might have hit it big, but it was a novelty.

3D TV is going to need to lose the glasses before it really hits it big.

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