by Anton Shilov
10/20/2010 | 10:42 PM
Microsoft Corp. has again condemned stereoscopic 3D technology as it exists today and called it a science experiment rather than a new product category with a significant market potential. The worst thing about the current stereo-3D (S3D) is necessity to wear special glasses that enable the effect.
"[Batman: Arkham Asylum with S3D support for Xbox 360] felt a little more like a science experiment than something that's going to go touch millions of people. Clearly, we're not going to ignore 3-D. I think it is something that will play a role in entertainment," said Phil Spencer, the corporate vice president for Microsoft Game Studios, in an interview with CNN.
It is hardly the first time when Microsoft criticizes S3D in its current form. It is obvious that it is uncomfortable to say at least for multiply people to play in stereo-3D games on one screen simultaneously. Moreover, S3D costs a lot of money to end-users: a new HDTV as well as stereo-3D glasses that may cost over $100 a pair. Finally, even Sony Computer Entertainment had to decrease resolution of S3D games compared to normal PlayStation 3 games in order to sustain performance.
"As an entertainment company, we are trying to do things that millions of people can go enjoy today. And for better or for worse, people just don't really have TVs in their house right now that are going to do 3D in a way that's going to work. [...] As a corporate mandate, I don't need to sell you a new TV. [...] A bunch of people sitting around the living room wearing $150 glasses - I am just not sure that's kind of mainstream today. Trying to get a bunch of people playing together in a room where not everybody sees the same thing [...] is kind of a weird disconnect to me," said Mr. Spencer.
Even though stereo-3D-supporting games for Xbox 360 will be released by various developers, it looks like Microsoft itself does not want to promote the technology just now. Perhaps, since the company now has to promote its Kinect motion sensor controller and putting resources into two technologies is just inefficient.