Joining the growing hordes, Verizon has become the most recent player in the 3D market. According to a Verizon press release, it is planning on releasing a 3D package to its TV subscribers before the end of 2010. The 3D packages will compliment the SD and HD channels already available, and be available to the nearly 3 million customers, mostly located in the Northeast.
Verizon has yet to announce any details, including pricing or how the packages will be structured. Specifics will likely wait until more 3D TVs are on the market, and a more realistic projection of the 3D TV industry can be glimpsed.
“The market for 3D TV is very early in its development. We’re monitoring the early sales of 3D TVs and expect to announce a 3D offering well in advance of the holiday TV-shopping season, when 3D television sales will expand,” Shawn Strickland, vice president of FiOS product management for Verizon said. “Verizon’s intent for our formal 3D offering is to be in the market in time for the holiday sales of 3D TVs, with a product worthy of our customers. Our goal is to offer a product that has a fully automated HDMI format-switching capability that switches between 2D and 3D, not via ponderous access to the TV’s setup menu. By then, we expect to have access to good 3D content and to have chosen our mode of delivery, whether full-time or part- time broadcast service, or via video on demand and to what measure as pay-per-view material.”
There are still many that doubt the inevitability of the transition to 3D TV (including us), but if it will happen, it will likely be spearheaded by the introduction of 3D sporting events. Next week Comcast will debut its 3D technology with the Masters Golf Tournament on April 7th through 11th, and this summer, ESPN plans to debut its 3D technology for the World Cup in June. More are sure to follow.