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Friday, February 26, 2010
New BD players Will Drive 3D Forward


The BDA's announcement in December last year on the finalisation of the 'Blu-ray 3D' specification has been cemented by Sony's release of a standalone 3D-Ready Blu-ray player, fixing the industry?s crosshairs on a 3D future.

Within four years, 50% of US homes will own a 3D-Ready display, and the uptake of 3D-Ready Blu-ray players won't be far behind, with one out of every three US homes owning one. This is according to Futuresource Consulting, with new research unveiled at their webinar, '3D: How Big, How Soon?', which took place on Thursday 25 February.

"Our research shows an imminent upsurge in the adoption of 3D-capable High Definition and Blu-ray hardware, now strengthened by a clearly defined 3D roadmap," says Jim Bottoms, Director at Futuresource. "We expect that a high percentage of BD players will ship with 3D capability next year, and within a few years it will be difficult to buy a player without 3D."

Hunger for 3D content will also be driven by owners of PS3 consoles who will be able to play 3D Blu-ray content via a firmware upgrade. For those consumers not yet convinced by the HD experience, 3D will be a highly persuasive reason to upgrade. Combine this with other premium features, such as connected TV and Entertainment Database Browsing, which allows users to browse actor and production information, and consumers in the early adopter and early majority segments will begin to upgrade fairly quickly.

Acording to data received by Futuresource Consulting, 72% of Americans surveyed in February want 3D in the home, now. However, only 39% are willing to pay for it.

By 2015, Futuresource believes all large-size HDTVs will be 3D-ready, and that by 2013 the $2,500-$4,500 entry level price for a 3D HDTV will have dropped by $1,000 or more. Futuresource predicts 70% of households in the United States will have a 3D-ready HDTV by 2015.

"With a number of leading hardware brands all vying to carve out an early position in the 3D TV and BD market, 3D Ready TVs and players will seed the 3D market in much the same way as the HD market was primed five years ago," says John Bird, a leading strategy analyst at Futuresource. "By 2015 we expect the majority of TVs available will be 3D-Ready and the normal replacement cycle will result in a good proportion of households in the US, Japan and Europe having a 3D-capable display," says Bird. "There is a real feeling of excitement surrounding 3D and here at Futuresource we believe the new unified approach will translate into commercial success within the course of the next few years."


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