by Anton Shilov
03/08/2011 | 07:31 PM
Stereoscopic 3D graphics has not managed to gain market presence for a number of years in the personal computer space. Nonetheless, once it become a standard on the market of video game consoles, it will become a standard on the market of video games of the future in general. As a result, it will have chances to become a standard for content globally.
"Stereo-3D will be a part of future game consoles," said an exec for Nvidia, during the company's financial analyst day 2011.
Stereo-3D technology from Nvidia Corp. is an excellent gross margin driver for the company; yet it is a controversial technology for the company's graphics business in general as it requires proprietary hardware that needs engaged gamers to buy the appropriate equipment. The tech is not supported widely enough to maintain the firm's gross margin of over 40%, yet the company continues to promote it actively.
Next-generation consoles are hard to predict. Microsoft Corp. pins a lot of into motion-sensing Kinect-like control; Sony is doing a similar thing in general; Nintendo is doing something completely different.
Nobody knows what happens to the game console business in the next years. For example, market share or Sony Computer Entertainment has been declining for several years from now. Sony is the largest supporter of stereo-3D TVs and supporting games on non-portable platforms and Blu-ray HD video supporter on the PS3 console. Nintendo is the only owner of an auto-stereoscopic 3DS portable platform.
“[The Nvidia executive] was referring to the Nintendo 3DS. However, that device, which is glasses-free, uses a graphics engine designed by DMP. The Sony PS3 got an update to the machine that raises the HDMI port to 1.4 so it can drive TVs with 120/240 Hz refresh for S3D using glasses. Neither Nintendo's Wii nor Microsoft's Xbox360 can do S3D. The next gen PSP will not do S3D either. So his statement although accurate is limited - 33% of home consoles can do S3D, 25% of hand consoles can do S3D,” explained Jon Peddie, the head of Jon Peddie Research market tracking company.
Future game consoles, however, will most likely support stereo-3D ouput.
“We have yet to hear about/from Microsoft and Apple as to whether they will come out with a handheld console. I would expect that either one of them did it would be S3D capable. Rumors continue to circulate about a next generation consoles from Microsoft (sometimes referred to as the "720") and if Microsoft does come out with a third generation (for them) console I'm sure it will have S3D capability,” added Mr. Peddie.