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3-D Television Coming Soon?

So I’ve never really been a huge fan of 3-D. I know this probably endangers my Gëëks-R-Us Card but honestly outside of being a gimmick I’ve never seen 3-D contribute that much to the story line. Is it entertaining? The first time. After that it has to be used correctly sparingly or it is just annoying. Coming off my second movie where I didn’t feel the 3-D was abused has me slightly optimistic over the recent announcements of 3-D television channels in the works.

ESPN plans to unveil a 3-D channel this year (June 2010) showing “a minimum of 85 live sporting events.” Live 3-D. This took a moment to sink in. Live 3-D. I’m not sure how that would work exactly but it sounds pretty cool – even if it is just a gimmick. Something like shark week except the linebacker not the shark would be coming right for you? I am interested to see how this would work and what it would look like. Not sure if I would like it and I’m definitely not buying anything more than a pair of glasses to watch it but it definitely has my interest peaked. They didn’t reveal much in this release but I have to agree with Consumer Electronics Association CEO Gary Shapiro who called this a “turning point for 3-D.” Should the technology take hold in this market I expect we will see it everywhere in the next 3-5 years. With ESPN picking the games and using the ABC/Disney machine to harness the technology I don’t see how it could miss by much.

Speaking of everywhere – the New York Times is reporting a Discovery, Imax and Sony combined effort on another 3-D channel for release in 2011. “It is expected to showcase a mix of 3-D content, including entertainment and sports. It will also show some of the natural history programming that Discovery is well known for.” Again – I want to see it before I make a call but am anxious to see what the new technology might look like on my TV.

So the news is out – 3-D television channels are on the way. What would I like to see? To avoid a Blu-Ray / HD-DVD mess I would like to see some basic agreements on what the end user would need to view all the channels prior to the release. If I have to change glasses every time I want to watch a different channel I will likely avoid the the 3-D channels. I see this in the same way I didn’t like watching non-HD channels on my HDTV. Yes – I might watch a particular program in 3-D but I doubt it would be a regular thing if it isn’t easy. Other than that? Impress me by not trying to impress me. Every shot doesn’t have to have something flying off the screen. Don’t abuse it.