3D is coming to British TV later in 2010
While not being specific it is probable that Sky will tap into its mainstream soccer subscribers, and showcase 3D test-transmissions at soccer stadiums and other high-profile, high-volume, venues. These could include pubs and bars. But how many 3D channels might make it to air?
BSkyB says the public will first see demonstration broadcasts in public places ahead of the dedicated channel that they’ve promised for next year.
The current promise is for a single channel, but BSkyB has a long tradition of under-promising and over-delivering. While some other European broadcasters offer barely a handful of HDTV channels, Sky currently offers well over 30 and some sources suggest that their eventual total could reach 70-80 channels in HD. Some informed sources say Sky will employ the same strategy as far as 3D is concerned.
The first list of channels is pretty easy to create. Sky’s first 3D channel might well be a compilation service, showing a game or two of soccer each week, plus other flagship programming. That might comprise highbrow ballet or drama, as well as natural history, music and travelogue-type programming which is perfect for showcasing 3D. As for its initial cluster of stand-alone 3D channels they are easy to predict. For example, Sky can be expected to invest heavily in sport, and soccer in particular, so a Sky Sports 1 in 3D can be depended on, followed as with its HD service by additional sports channels in 3D.
Not that there will be 70-80 channels in 3D – at least not for some time yet. But it is recognised that Sky has in mind to build up – over time - an offering of close to about 10 3D services. The coming year will see a raft of suitable TV sets coming onto the market, and Sky is also looking to see supplies of polarising filters become available that could be fixed to existing HD sets.
It’s the same with movies. Hollywood is known to be seeking another pay-TV ‘window’ for its growing portfolio of 3D programming. How quickly Sky Movies in 3D grows to Sky Movies 2 in 3D depends entirely on Hollywood – but the studios growing enthusiasm for 3D movies is clear to see.