I want my 3D TV!

At IFA today many companies are showing off their attempts at 3D TV. Most of the displays being shown are not yet designed for home use, and instead are being positioned as business applications: in-store signage and advertising, architecture and CAD displays, and prototype user interfaces. Most of the televisions require no glasses, and produce a reasonable 3D display. In the displays I’ve seen, there are a few “sweet spot” viewing angles that produce an acceptable 3D display, and viewing from an angle just a little off from these shows the individual stereoscopic images just slightly off alignment from one another.

There are several competing technologies for displaying 3D images on a 2D surface. The one I learned about at the Philips Research Center is called “2D + depth + occlusion”, and obviously Philips thinks its the best. As these things usually go, it’ll probably be the major Hollywood studios that make the final decision about which format is declared the victor for the entertainment sector.

The Epson booth was sporting a 3D projector, rather than a display. And when I say “projector” I really mean “projectors” because their system uses two projectors to display each of the images necessary. And for this, you still need to wear glasses.

Epson wasn’t alone relying on glasses to provide a 3D experience: Samsung’s also has a display that requires them. The folks below look absolutely thrilled with the technology, as you can see:

It looks like true 3D television is still a couple years away.