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Sony looks to deliver 3D direct to Bravia Internet TVs

TV manufacturer Sony sees the Bravia Internet Video platform as a key way to deliver 3D content to consumers, according to the company’s head of public affairs, Adrian Northover Smith.

Smith, addressing Informa’s 3D TV World Forum in London this morning, said that the connected TV platform, together with its ownership of Hollywood studio Sony Pictures, would “enable us to deliver 3D content directly to the TV set”.

Smith also said that 3D would soon be seen as a natural add-on to a TV purchase by consumers. “Although very few people intend to buy a 3D TV [specifically], many will buy a TV and 3D will become a wrap-up with your new TV set,” he said. However, for TV manufacturers, the sale of ‘passive’ screens in combination with active shutter 3D glasses meant there was no premium on the sale of the screen, he said.

Addressing the same conference, Kevin O’Neill, head of on-demand development at UK cable operator Virgin Media, said that Virgin Media’s own research showed that about 6% of its customers were “actively looking to purchase a 3D TV in the near future”.

“The price of TVs has started dropping,” said O’Neill, adding that 3D capability only accounted for a part of the cost of internet-capable higher-range models.

Virgin Media, which launched 3D as part of its on-demand service, yesterday announced that its first linear broadcast in the format would be Eurosport’s coverage of the French Open Tennis championship. O’Neill said that about 35,000 subscribers had used the 3D service to date.