There aren’t that many movies in 3-D yet. And there are even fewer available for streaming. Plus only a handful of devices support the technology. But video-streaming service VUDU figures it has the ability to support 3-D movies, so why not flip the switch now?
At the Consumer Entertainment Show in Las Vegas, the Walmart-owned service announced that, starting today, customers who have the right devices (and glasses) will be able to view movies in 3-D. “Part of our strategy is to have as broad a footprint as possible and deliver the best streaming experience as possible,” CEO Edward Lichty told Fast Company.
Most PlayStations have 3-D capabilities, and about 20% of televisions sold this year will also support the feature. But Lichty expects that consumers will increasingly choose devices with the capability--“just as in 1999 and 2000, people were buying plasma TVs, even though there was not a ton of HD content at that point,” he said. “People want to future-proof as much as possible.”
Lichty believes VUDU will have a jump on the competition because his service, which launched in 2007, was built in such a way as to make adding 3-D capabilities a fairly simple proposition. Engineers only started implementing the change in the fall, Lichty said, following conversations with studio executives last summer about the role 3-D was playing in their roadmaps.
When it comes to home-viewing, movies are only part of the 3-D equation. While your run-of-the-mill sitcom will likely remain in old-school two dimensions, expect to see more sports and games dabbling in immersive experiences. ESPN already has a 3-D channel. And more and more gaming companies are releasing 3-D titles.