by Anton Shilov
01/20/2010 | 07:36 PM
Various manufacturers of TV-sets have demonstrated their products featuring stereoscopic 3D output at the Consumer Electronics Show earlier this month. But it will take a long time till those HDTVs will become popular, according to market research firm DisplaySearch. In fact, only a little more than a million of 3D ready TVs will be sold in 2010.
Nevertheless, slow sales of 3D HDTVs do not mean that such products are completely useless for their makers. Average selling prices for TVs are expected to fall for the first time since the flat panel TV transition began, as a result, TV manufacturers are building new combinations to re-value their products and retain consumer interest. DisplaySearch research indicates that LED backlighting and 240Hz LCDs will serve as enabling technologies for new feature developments in TVs in 2010, specifically for 3D TVs. DisplaySearch forecasts 3D-ready TVs will grow from 0.2 million units in 2009 to 64 million units in 2018, whereas this year their sales will total about 1.2 million.
“We have passed the first hurdle. The critical Blu-ray 3D specification is written, but now comes the hard work of securing interoperability. Consumers will want reassurance that such things as 3D glasses will interoperate between brands. Retailers will also have the same demand to allow a thriving accessory market to develop. The next stage is less glamorous but vital to secure 3D’s long-term value. We have seen 3D crazes before, and sustained attention to detail is important to prevent disillusionment from starting,” said Paul Gray, DisplaySearch director of TV electronics research.
Interestingly, popularity of Internet-connected HDTVs is expected to grow at rather extreme rates going forward. DisplaySearch forecasts that over 70 million connected TVs will be shipped in 2012, up from around 15 million in 2009. Just for comparison: there will be less than 10 million 3D TVs supplied in 2012.
“The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) demonstrated that Internet-connected TVs have finally come of age. While in the past connected TV sets have seemed to be a solution in search of a problem, compelling new capabilities such as family video calling not only reinforce the TV’s central position in the home, but also represent a bold move to reclaim some of the tasks swallowed by the PC,” said Mr. Gray.