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Ubisoft: 3D TVs in "everyone's" home by 2013

"More important than a lot of people believe," according to marketing boss

Publisher Ubisoft has made the bold claim that the majority of homes will own 3D-capable TVs within three years.

Speaking to GamesIndustry.biz sister site Eurogamer.net, UK head of marketing Murray Pannel said "The truth is I think it is a technology that's coming. We can't ignore it. It'll start slowly this year. But like HDTV I wouldn't rule out the fact that this will be installed in everyone's living room in three year's time.

"For the naysayers, if you like, I would say, 'Just watch this space'... You have global corporations like Sony pushing 3D as hard as they possibly can, Sky showcasing 3D content on TV. I believe it will become a much more important part of consumer electronics than a lot of people believe."

Pannel also emphasised that Ubisoft had been ahead the curve on 3D, with last year's poorly-received Avatar game. "The technology was in its infancy and you couldn't buy 3D TVs at all," he said.

He confirmed more 3D games were on the way from the publisher, however.

Pannel's prediction reaches further even than a Sony-endorsed survey claiming that 40 per cent of TVs would be 3D by 2014, and recent polls suggesting around 30 per cent of consumers were considering in buying one.

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Latest comments (26)

Richard Leadbetter Director, Digital Foundry9 years ago
With 120Hz technology and HDMI 1.4 set to be a standard in pretty much all future screens, 3D will basically be in the living room by stealth. It'll still require people to active want it and to go out and buy the glasses though.
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Skully Brookes Part time software engineer, Bright Ascension9 years ago
Wishful thinking I think, HDTVs are still taking time to enter the majority of peoples homes. The people who've purchased HDTVs recently won't be looking into another new 2000+ TV for a while. Though the fact that 3DTVs are already 'affordable' (i.e in comparison to how new tech is usually priced) will definately help towards increasing 3DTV adoption.
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Jeff Wayne Technical Architect 9 years ago
Comparing HDTV and 3DTV is ridiculous in the first place. 3DTV has some enormous drawbacks - people hate the need to wear glasses, there are various health concerns around it and the price is stellar. Until some palatable solution to this comes about, 3DTV is nothing but a fad for the tech geek who has to have all the latest gadgets. Ubishaft probably have a pipeline of 3D title(s) and this guy is simply wishful thinking!
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Show all comments (26)
Luke Giddings Programmer, Supermassive Games9 years ago
Jeff, your missing the point that Richard hit on the head - I think most TVs people can buy over the next few years will be 3D capable, even if the consumer doesn't actually care about ever watching any 3DTV. Just like it is now very difficult to buy a non-HDTV, ubi are betting in a few years it will be very difficult to buy a non-3DTV, no matter how much people actually use it.
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Doug Paras9 years ago
I think only the high end more expensive HD TV's would have the 3D enabling in them, you think that a $1500 1080HD flat screen would include that kind of technology for a cheap low number? That is assuming its not with the glasses that they use to mark up the cost of HD3D TV's.
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Phil Wilkins Senior Programmer in charge of Awesome, Sony Computer Entertainment America9 years ago
As long as you have a 120Hz panel, basic 3D support is pretty trivial in the TV. I expect it'll be ubiquitous all but the lowest end of new sets within a couple of years.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Phil Wilkins on 9th July 2010 10:26pm

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Haven Tso Web-based Game Reviewer 9 years ago
I will go for 3D TV only when they developed one that doesn't require glasses and costing a fortune. Of course if all broadcasting ditch normal broadcast with 3D broadcast then I will get one. But at this point, unless they come down in price to a point that the general mass could afford, I can't see that happening. And also, those glasses. It is just not something very practical for prolonged period for watching TV and gaming. But I guess they have to talk it up as they are investing heavily in them. So they have to create a market by making such statements regularly to generate more interest.
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Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.9 years ago
50% of homes will have a 3DTV in 3 years? Mr. Pannel, your dubious expectations need a revision.

To expect 50% of all homes in the UK (or any developed nation) to buy a new TV in 3 years is asking a whole lot from people that were already asked a whole over the past 3 years (buying HDTV's).
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gi biz ;,pgc.eu 9 years ago
While I agree that products on the market will be gradually replaced, it doesn't mean that "everyone" will buy one. I personally don't need a TV at all, and should I find out I do, I wouldn't spend more than 200 on it. I doubt I'll change my opinion in 2-3 years time.
Speaking of health issues, my co-workers working on the 3D-glasses support seem to have headaches more often than others do, and I'm not sure that watching without glasses for a long time is very safe either. Let's see if such issues could affect the market trend?
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I think 3D TVs will be affordable in 3 years time. Whether 50% will have it is a different issue. Look at DAB. Loads of folks are refusing to upgrade to digital. Good on em! :)
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It definitely won't happen in Australia: the government has been pushing for over 10 years to get people to upgrade from analog to digital, and still a % of the population are running with old analog sets.

A large % has already upgraded to a flatscreen digital set (non-3D capable), and probably won't upgrade for at least another 10 years (probably not the gaming population though).

Personally, I have no interest in glasses-3D at home - will rather go to the cinema occasionally for that special movie/experience.
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Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.9 years ago
When I can wear my eye glasses and get the 3D effect, call me. And there's probably several hundred million eye glass wearers that agree with me.

Eye glasses + 3D glasses = uncomfortable.
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James Finlan Studying Information Systems, University of Manchester9 years ago
As someone above said it is very much wishful thinking on behalf of the industry. Yes they may enter the living room en masse by stealth purely by stopping the manufacturing of non-3d panels. That does not mean people will buy the glasses, activate 3d and enjoy themselves though. Even with 120hz panels alot of people still complain about headaches, many people would not wear the glasses on a regular basis in the living room either. Then of course there is cost, simply put those 3d screens cost significantly more to manufactuer and whilst costs will drop over time due to economies of scale they are always going to be more expensive than non-3d because of the extra electronics and processing power required.

That is not to say it will fail, it will be embraced by a tech-savvy segment of the market but 50% of the mainstream is wildly speculative and without foundation.
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Patrick Frost QA Project Monitor 9 years ago
Personally I think the reason behind Ubi pushing 3d is to allow some of their mediocre games to have a reason to be bought. Take Dark Void, a game that sold and reviewed well under par. Making this 3d suddenly turns it into a new experience especially when the 3d market will have little competition to show up their luke warm game design.
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@patrick - interesting thought
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Kingman Cheng Illustrator and Animator 9 years ago
3 years for everyone to have 3D TV's?

I know loads of people who still don't have HDTV's, good luck with that!
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Josef Brett Animator 9 years ago
As Richard and Phil have already pointed out a lot of TV's that people own are already 3D capable (just not as easy to activate as the 'dedicated' 3D TV's).

It begs the question why 3DTV's are so much more expensive than thier 'non-3D' counterparts. Maybe the glasses ports and new "3D Ready" stickers cost a few hundred /$!!
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The problem is elsewhere. 3DTV just sucks. I've tried movies, games, and TV programs, they all offer very underwhelming experiences, and it's only a matter of a few minutes for your brain to forget the "advantage" of 3D. I games it was even useless, your brain being able to construct a pretty accurate 3D scope with 2D images. And in GT5 for instance, apart from the dashboard of the car the rest pretty much looked the same as a 2D image (everything in the distance looks pretty flat).
Until they find a way to make it work without glasses, the hassle to wear them is just not worth it.
So, when you consider the price and how early it is for the technology... I highly doubt they'll be there in 3 years.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by shann biglione on 12th July 2010 3:34pm

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Doug Paras9 years ago
The reason they are pushing 3D is the same reason they pushed Blu-ray, it gives the industry a greater control over thier copy-writes then current TV and DVD's ever did.
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Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.9 years ago
^And a news plug every 5 minutes that makes their products "hot" which increases their revenue after years to dwindling profits.
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Haven Tso Web-based Game Reviewer 9 years ago
@Michael, I think more people in Australia (where I live) are getting flat screen and digital TV because the Government is gradually switching off analogue signals and also the price have really come down. There are a lot more cheaper choices with the mainland Chinese brands and "no-frills" brands in the market. So people who cannot afford (or will not want to afford) a Bravia or Pioneer plasma can go for Samsung, LG or even Soniq and TCL ones that are only a few hundred bucks.

The market is price sensitive and 3D TV so far is just gimmick. I tried them in the shops. Yeah they add a depth to the image but then apart from that you don't really gain much. And as Jimmy said opital glasses plus 3D glasses equals ultimate discomfort. So why would you pay so much to add discomfort to something that you just enjoy as it is?

Again for me this kind of statement from Ubisoft is just market creation and pushing.
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Doug Paras9 years ago
It should also be noted that TV broadcasters both Cable and Satellite want 3D TV too, cause it takes less bandwidth to push 3D TV then it does the higher end HD such as 1080P or 780P.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Doug Paras on 13th July 2010 6:28am

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Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.9 years ago
Doug, I've always read that it will be equal or greater than HD bandwidth.

With the Frame-Compatibility method (the most likely used method for cable carriers) they'll cram the 2 eye streams into 1 HD 2D frame. The resolution takes a hit but you keep the bandwidth current and most modern cable boxes can receive the signal.

With the Full-Resolution method....I think you get the idea. It's expected to eat up an entire 6 Mhz stream which usually carries 2-3 HD streams.
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David Rider Publisher, Hustler UK9 years ago
I just can't see it (no pun intended). If everyone who doesn't already have HDTV suddenly goes out and buys a new screen which is 3D ready, then maybe. But wasn't there a report last week which said 70% of buyers in Japan had no interest in it because of the glasses, etc.?

Personally, that's how I feel. I think it's the Lisa Simpson of TV breakthroughs: the answer to a question that was never asked.

Give me a call when they can produce the effect without the glasses and associated nonsense. Until then, I'll stick with 2D HD.
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Doug Paras9 years ago
Jimmy Webb: It depends on the compression, from all the people I've talked too, and some in the industry say that cable and Satellite companies will put a higher compression rate on 3D then on HD. It will be easier to get away with a higher compression rate from what I've read and have been told which will help bring the Bandwidth down. What I hear HD is really hurting a lot of cable and Satellite companies rather then help cause of cost of conversion.
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Jim Chadwick Buyer, CDS Superstores9 years ago
All the HDTV's have built in obsolesence and unless you have an extended warranty you will be buying a new one soon! lol
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