Companies pull out of 3D TV market

By Katie Morley

3D TV sales have declined each year since 2012. Photo / 123RF
3D TV sales have declined each year since 2012. Photo / 123RF

It was not long ago that 3D television was being billed as the next big revolution in home entertainment.

Now it appears that the much-trumpeted concept has died an early death, as the only two major 3D TV makers left have discontinued the product. Last year TV-making giant Samsung announced it would stop making 3D sets, and now both LG and Sony have followed suit, leaving no major manufacturer left in the market. The firms admitted a lack of demand was behind the move, as consumers were not sold on the idea of sitting in their living rooms wearing a chunky pair of 3D glasses while watching TV.

Tim Alessi, LG's director of new product development, told tech website Cnet: "3D capability was never really universally embraced in the industry for home use, and it's just not a key buying factor when selecting a new TV. Purchase process research showed it's not a top buying consideration, and anecdotal information indicated that actual usage was not high.

"We decided to drop 3D support for 2017 in order to focus our efforts on new capabilities such as HDR, which has much more universal appeal."

A Sony representative said: "Based on current market trends we decided not to support 3D for our 2017 models." TV makers are instead focusing on newer technologies such as HDR (high dynamic range), which displays a wider and richer range of colours, much brighter whites, and much deeper, darker blacks.

Hype around 3D TV technology peaked about seven years ago around the time of Avatar, the first animated film to demonstrate how 3D could be used to create entertaining visual effects.

Its fall out of the public eye is thought to be related to a lack of "must see" 3D films in the years since Avatar's release.

According to data from the NPD Group, 3D TV sales have declined each year since 2012. From 2015 to 2016 their share of total TV sales halved from 16 per cent to just 8 per cent.

- Daily Telegraph UK

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