Samsung: Glasses-free 3D TV not ready yet

The technology is low-resolution and one-dimensional, a Samsung executive says

Televisions that allow users to view 3D TV without glasses are not yet ready for prime time, a Samsung executive said on Tuesday.

Samsung earlier this year said that the company is looking into the development of glasses-free 3D TVs. Its rivals, such as Toshiba, are doing the same, expecting to release the TVs in the next few years.

Nonetheless, for the foreseeable future, watching 3D TV will involve using glasses, said John Revie, vice president of home entertainment at Samsung Electronics.

That's because while the capability to watch 3D TV without glasses exists, it is at a low resolution and the panels are expensive, he said. Even if users accept low-resolution images, when a person watching a 3D TV without glasses moves even the slightest, the image gets distorted, he said.

"You have to watch it virtually motionless," Revie said.

Samsung is heavily investing in 3D technology and offers a number of 3D products, including TVs and a portable Blu-ray 3D player. The company on Tuesday held an event to promote the development of applications for Samsung's latest consumer electronics, including 3D television sets.

The company is offering US$500,000 in rewards to developers and teams building well-conceived and engaging applications.

The contest is designed for TV-related applications, but in time, the company wants to bring together the entire ecosystem so apps can be shared from large-screen to small-screen devices, Revie said. Users could start watching a movie on a large-screen TV and continue watching the same movie on mobile devices, Revie said.

Revie also said that the company in the near future will enable the streaming of 3D movies over the Internet to television sets. The company recently announced it would stream 3D movie trailers to TV sets through content providers.

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