It’s starting to look like companies are going to ride the 3D wave whether consumers decide to join in or not. Toy company Hasbro is updating its classic ViewFinder to pair with iPhones and iPod touches for 3D gaming and viewing. Apple, Dreamworks, the Discovery Network, Sony, and IMAX are developing content for the new toy, dubbed the My3D.
We’re not quite sold on the product yet. While it’s really cool that one of the simplest childhood toys is making a reappearance, the fact that its’ target demographic appears to be kids and iPhone users is confusing. If it were looking into the pockets of teens and adults who wanted 3D content on their Apple products, then its child-like, binocular modeling seems out of place. It’s even bigger and bulkier than standard 3D glasses, which is the primary issue consumers have with 3D programming. Is there some sort of technology in the binoculars glasses can’t provide, or is it just for the sake of being retro? The binoculars allow an iPhone or iPod touch to slide into it while you hold them and view the 3D content, which means you can’t interact with the screen, only watch it. And to stop, pause, rewind, or do anything, you have to take it off, obviously.
However, the promise of eventually using the technology for gaming seems more promising – except that initial looks at the My3D binoculars eliminates hands free use of any kind. Assuming this is updated for that exact purpose, it could find a niche of Apple gamers. Don’t get too excited though, as its first run seems focused on viewing-only content.
At only $30 for the My3D binoculars and a bevy of free and inexpensive apps to accompany it (from top of the line developers no less), it could possibly be a gamble that pays off. We’ll have to wait until spring 2011 to find out.