The EBU Headquarters hosts a series of meetings of the DVB Project from 25-27 January 2010 on the subject of 3D-TV, with strong involvement from EBU TECHNICAL staff. The DVB project is moving into gear on 3D-TV in its traditional way.
First, the requirements for commercial success are discussed and agreed, then the technology needed to meet the requirements is defined. The first day of the set of meetings was a workshop designed to bring everyone up to the same speed. There were a series of speakers from Europe and the United States. It seems that the world of 3D-TV will begin with 'Pay TV' and only later move into free-to-air broadcasting.
| High end and mass market |
Some things are clear. One is that most TV set manufacturers are making or making plans to make, 3D-TV sets. These sets will cost more than normal HDTV flat panels sets, but they will work very well for either normal HDTV or 3D-TV. Most set makers are planning to start with 'high end' products, though Sony announced that it will also be hitting the volume market from the beginning. Part of the reason may be because a Sony PS3 games player already purchased can be upgraded by software by the owner to output 3D via a Blu Ray. This opens the door to tens of millions of sources of 3D-TV from the early days.
Dario Pennisi (3DSwitch) giving a 3D-TV signalling demonstration at the event.
The meeting also discussed the relative likelihood that 'free to air' broadcasting will turn to 3D-TV soon. There are many concerns from broadcasters, not least of which is the additional costs of programme production. But, as several delegates stressed, in the end, free to air broadcasters may be obliged to turn to 3D-TV - just as they were for HDTV - because if they don't, audiences will turn to channels that do have 3D-TV.