Toshiba wins 3D TV race

 3-D TV Pictures, Images and Photos

The race has been on for some time now to bring to market a 3D TV that does not require glasses. Philips was the first one to make a 3D TV with no glasses, but it was not affordable enough for consumers and stayed in the advertising/marketing industry. However, yesterday Toshiba announced that it will be the first to sell an affordable, glasses-free 3D TV to the general public.

Now this doesn’t mean that you and I living in North America or Europe will be able to buy one. For now, the TV’s only come in 20 inches and 12 inches and thus, Toshiba decided that they will not be sold here since we don’t care much for TV’s that small. It will likely be a little while until they produce this technology for larger TV’s that will show up in stores in North America and Europe. Regardless, it looks like they will still be the first one to market here too.

The technology itself is far from perfect in its current form. They say that the image is best viewed when your angle is within 40 degrees of the centre. According to the NYT article that discussed this announcement (click here to read it), when the TV is viewed from the side then the picture quality drops dramatically. This is not unexpected since it is the first 3D TV that does not require glasses and is still somewhat affordable. I suspect this technology will improve with successive versions of the TV’s.

I recently heard an interesting take on 3D technology from comedian and creator of the hit show Family Guy, Seth MacFarlane. He said that he was not a fan of 3D and that it’s something that peaks in interest every 20 years or so and then goes away. He makes a good point. However, I think that this time it will be a little different because the technology is about ready to make it work, which can not be said for the past. I don’t know how big it will be or if it will replace traditional TV viewing, but I do think that it is here to stay this time and Toshiba will likely be the first one to cement that.