Investment in 3D low priority for broadcasters

Broadcasters’ rate production of 3D content and channels is their lowest technology investment priority, and the lack of programming for consumers who have bought a 3D TV is set to continue, according to Ovum.

In a new report analysing the state of the 3D market, the independent technology analyst unveils findings which reveal a clear lack of enthusiasm for 3D in the broadcast industry.

When asked to rate their strategic priorities for 2011, senior IT and business executives rated “production of 3D content and/or launch of 3D channels” as the lowest priority for strategic investment. Fifty three per cent of respondents globally said 3D content production was “not an important business consideration” . However, production of 3D content was rated as a slightly higher priority by executives in Asia- Pacific companies,

Tim Renowden, Ovum analyst and author of the report, commented: “In Asia-Pacific, various methods of implementing 3D are used. For instance, several broadcasters and pay TV operators, such as Fox Sports and the Seven Network in Australia have presented 3D programming on an ad hoc basis; in Japan, NTT Plala’s IPTV service, Hikari TV, includes a 3D on-demand pay-per-view portal. However, the high cost of 3D production has limited content availability and delayed some channel launches. Given the lack of enthusiasm for investing in 3D content production and delivery expressed by broadcasters, this situation is unlikely to change rapidly”.

“This ambivalence towards investment in 3D content production and creation of 3D channels, leaves a big hole in the availability of 3D content, and tells us that the lack of 3D programming we have seen during 2010 is unlikely to improve in 2011.

According to the report, the high cost of investment in infrastructure and personnel is a major factor in the reluctance of broadcasters to invest in 3D production.

Renowden added: “The lack of broadcast content means console gaming is likely to provide an important driver of 3D adoption, with Sony promoting the technology on its PlayStation 3. Gaming has the advantage that incremental costs of 3D production are much lower than for filmed entertainment.”