back to article Sky hints at 3D TV launch

Satellite broadcaster Sky has said that UK viewers could be treated to 3D broadcasts inside 24 months. The firm’s Director of Strategic Product Development, Gerry O'Sullivan, told The Times newspaper that a 3D service “could be launched any time in the next two years”. “Could” is the key word here, as O'Sullivan stressed that …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Once again, innovation comes from the private sector rather than the subsidised tax junkies at the beeb.

  2. AF
    Thumb Down

    Re: Innovation

    If the Beeb used my licence fee money to fund this "innovation", I'd be royally hacked off. Their iPlayer work, on the other hand - very good. And that's coming from a Mac owner.

    Seriously - red and green specs? Are they going to be delivered to me on the back of a cereal packet, too?

    HD is barely worth the bother of switching as it is (I'm not bothering until my Sky+ box dies, SD looks fine on my 40" 1080p anyway), 3D even less so.

  3. Daniel Dainty

    For those of us who don't see in 3D

    these red-green glasses are pretty much useless.

  4. Neil


    I remember watching 3D videos with red/green specs back in the very early 80's when I was a wee nipper.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down


    from non 3D image.. it'll be a faked up version which will most likey make you feel sick after a while and won't be that good.

    Not interested.

  6. Mike


    Thank god for that.

    This is nothing but a gimmick and I'm glad that the Beeb are spending the license money on more useful stuff like iPlayer than this tosh.

  7. Chris Miller
    Thumb Down


    Right ... now if only Sky could get hold of some half-way decent content to display on it (other than footy).

  8. Anonymous Coward


    Actually, the Beeb are working on. It was on some BBC show last night (Inside Out or The One Show?). Most likely where the reg got the story from.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    HD not 3D

    @JonB, I think you find that gimmicks come from a company that has to maintain a it viewing figures which

    No one is talking 3D in the TV industry its a gimmick the industry has just adjusted to HD never mind the next big thing. Sky will really have to show that 3D can make money and shot things 3D and not just process 2D footage which a number of companies are doing.

  10. Cameron Colley

    No thanks, if it's all the same.

    I'd rather not have to wear silly glasses to watch a flickering screen when I want to see some telly or a film.

  11. Paul M

    Innovation from Sky??!?

    You mean the company that put advanceed television viewing back years by choosing the cheaper PAL standard rather than the digital sound and widescreen-supporting D(2)-MAC that the more forward-thinking countries were adopting?

    Even on their own satellite channels the BBC were broadcasting widescreen years before Sky got around to it.

  12. Robert Grant


    And once again you can't win against relentlessly thoughtless opinionation: if the Beeb /had/ started developing 3d, guess who'd be complaining about them wasting your money instead of developing world class-leading television?

  13. Dominic Tristram


    @JonB - you are joking, right? Name one single innovation that Sky has come up with, other than convincing idiots to pay for three hundred channels of crap.

    Didn't Sharp release a 3D monitor that didn't need glasses a few years back? It required you to sit in a very well defined area, but it looked cool. Not seen one in the wild though...

  14. DT



    Did you not live in the 80s? Dual colour specs != innovation.

    As for the Beeb being tax junkies...since when is SKY free (and since when did they create any original content worth watching?)

  15. This post has been deleted by its author

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Oh hooray

    Dear God why? Quick everyone, buy a digital TV, quick everyone, buy an HD TV, quick everyone, buy a proper HD TV, now 3D? lol, what a load of crap. Their basic service is barely worth it, what with it being stuffed with adverts 33% of the time, unless you take out a 2nd mortgage of course to watch 3 year old films and overblown circus, sorry football matches.

  17. Dick Emery
    Thumb Down


    Red and Green specs? That may have been the big thing back in the 50's but this is 2009 people!

  18. stickman
    Thumb Down


    once again we are asked to wear stupid cardboard specs

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Which 3D

    Is this the 3D that's done with two cameras or the one where they colour everything all red and green?

  20. George Shaw

    Innovation ?

    Innovation!!! Really... red and green specs... they having a laugh... !!!!

  21. Tom

    Red and Green Specs

    Why the hell would you need Red & Green Stereoscopic glasses on a 3D TV. A bog standard TV can display Red/Green stereoscopic images, hell, even paper can! Surely you would need polarizing glasses or something along those lines? Surely the future can't be 3D but in 2 amazing horrific colours!?!?

  22. Anonymous Coward

    It is like living the 80s all over again.

    This, recession, an A Team movie and plans to build a plane that will get to Australia in 90 minutes. I feel like I have stepped in to a time warp back 20 years ago.

    Except for the whole interweb thing natch

  23. Anonymous Coward

    Ummm ........

    So you need to wear some weirdo pair of plastic glasses?

    I'll save my money for "Hologram ready" TV...

  24. Martin Lyne

    @ JonB

    I'd be a bit annoyed if the BBC spent my money on RnD instead of, you know, stuff to watch. Not that I watch TV.

  25. Saul

    Never mind the licence fee, feel the width...

    I should bloody hope so! Sky costs three times as much and provides bugger all quality programming. The money has to be used for something.

    And no, buying Premier League football rights doesn't count.

  26. Anonymous Coward


    So Sky see their traditional sources of income being squeezed and this is the best response they can come up with?

    This is the same crappy "3D" tech which they've been flogging for years, it's a joke. For Sky to be persuing this gimic speaks volumes about their confidence in their future with FreeSat, terrestrial HD and Virgin storming into their home turf. What's next, Smellovision?

    To the guy who thinks this is the sort of 'innovation' required from the BBC, I'd scream bloody murder if they even spent a single pound of my license fee persuing such a stupid technology.

  27. David Webb


    After spending £400 on a HDTV, another £200 on Sky HD, as well as the £120 p/a subscription fee for Sky HD, on top of theSky subscription, there is no way in hell that I'm going to spend another £400 on a new TV as well as the usual £200+£10pm fee that Sky will want to charge for the service.

    HDTV is still sort of new, people who have just upgraded will not want to pay for a new upgrade, even within 2 years

    @ JonB - Why would the BBC want to spend millions of taxpayers money on a system which no one can use right now, and may never want to use? The Japanese are already using Super-HD, so it could end up a fight between Super-HD and 3D-TV, do you really want the BBC spending licence fee money on a system which may lose the battle against Super-HD? Or would you rather they let the private sector take the risks, and just do what they do, broadcast the content.

  28. Paul


    Sky have developed this for their own system, which will translate the data in the box before passing it to the TV.

    I'm not sure but I doubt that a 3D signal can be broadcast on the analgue spectrum.

    And of course the BBC didn't develop the iPlayer did it ...

  29. Caffeine Junkie

    Just the facts maam, just the facts.

    The 3D demos that Sky have been doing do not use Red/Green glasses, but use polarised light (grey glasses) like in the cinemas. Phillips have a TV that doesnt need glasses but I'd be worried about viewing distance and angle with that one.

  30. Kris Whitmore


    If this had been developed by the beeb this article would be swamped with posts complaining about the waste of license payers money on technology that few people want or would be able to get.

    Damned if you don't, damned if you do.

  31. Warhelmet


    Oh, is this the same 3D techology that use glasses with LCD shutters? Or is it something different?

    I really don't know why they bother with the tv. Why not just have the glasses?

  32. Ian Ferguson
    Thumb Down


    More like another gimmick to sell new TVs... after all, it won't be long until every home has a shiny HDTV, so they'll need something new to flog.

  33. Jerome


    And all you need is a 3D TV. I think you get a free one with the Daily Mail this week...

  34. pctechxp

    Not really new

    As 3D has been around for years

  35. Mike Ball
    Black Helicopters

    How about......

    ... fixing the *** bugs that still bedevil the HD box and give us the long overdue HD EPG before announcing yet more blue-sky features?

  36. Craig
    Thumb Down


    No thanks, wake me up when they can do proper 3D.

    Or: spend this R&D time making a better Sky HD box :)

  37. Rob Wiltshire

    Any chance ...

    ... of getting more than 2 decent HD channels before they start worrying about 3D?

  38. An nonymous Cowerd

    two lcd's

    TV system I saw had an enormous LED backlight then two differently polarised LCD screens in series, hence requiring the luser mounted left/right polaroid glasses. OK for Italians, watching TV indoors wearing sunglasses!!

    Other webstuff mentioned that there are around 4 other competing 3D technologies, I wish there was actually some RF Spectrum defined to carry all those important 3d Jordan pixels across the airwaves.

    Anyway we have to be nice to SKY as don't they still employ the NDS spetsnaz?, strange how the two French satellite systems TPS and ABsat were on Hotbird until recently (...with new Viacess keys leaked regularly) now there's just a monopoly CANALsat using , surprise, NDS encryption technology on Astra. Do I really need a decoder card posted to a French address or can I just buy in a French supermarket? Ciel, non merci!

  39. Anonymous Coward

    BBC Emplyees posting?

    there's a whole lot of negativity on here, at least someone's trying the BBC are far too busy pissing my license money on twats like Ross to afford to innovate and showing far too much crap reality TV, even the "edgy" BBC3 is mediocre at best. Yes Sky is subscription service and no one is forcing you too, you could watch terrestrial, or go virgin, Sky have done some great things the HD is excellent, if you can't see it you have a bum TV or bad eyes.

    /Rant at naysayers.

  40. Anonymous Coward

    3D TELEVISION??????

    Next thing you know, we'll have VIDEO PHONES!!!!!


  41. Jay
    Paris Hilton


    Considering how often you get ripped into when you make comments here I have to wonder if you are the same JonB who is registered on a certain M/Cycle site, even though that JonB (Who may be you) doesn't own a bike and his comments get ripped into there as well. Are you the same JonB?

  42. James

    Red and Green specs?

    Im not too sure about red and green specs, dont they use polarized glasses? they look like light tinted sunglasses. Either way i hope it does come because it means that HD wont be their premium service and so hopefully drop the high price tags and 'HD subscription' charges!!

    I embrace this new technology, i embrace all new technology its a step in the right direction instead of nothing!!

  43. James Prior
    Thumb Down

    You really think ..

    .. the BBC don't spend money on R&D ? All those "I'm glad they spend our money on TV than silly innovations.." really don't know what the BBC do.

    They spend a *HUGE* amount of money on R&D every year. A few years back they spent a fortune on developing a plasma TV with a company called Delphi - which to be honest was really pants anyway. Did sell a few units because of it's "Developed in conjunction with the BBC" sticker but wasn't worth the huge price tag.

  44. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    No, don't do motorbikes at all. Must be a different one. Wouldn't the world be boring if we all agreed though?

    Certainly kicked up a shit storm with that one didn't I. ;)

    I wasn't really suggesting that the beeb should do it, just observing that the private sector is where it comes from, not the subsidised tax junkies at the beeb. It's interesting that those who don't want their tax spent on innovation do want it spent on the iPlayer though.

    Most of you lot seem to think that the red and green 3D visualisation requires special transmission and receiving equipment? Surely to god with a little thought you can see that the reg has just tacked on a load of bollocks there? If it is glasses it'll be polaroid. Also you lot do realise that you can get 3D displays that don't require glasses?

    >I'm not sure but I doubt that a 3D signal can be broadcast on the analgue spectrum.

    Analogue is getting turned off. However, it's self evident that multiple video streams can be transmitted at once anyway. Do you think that BBC 2 turns off when you switch to BBC 1?

    >And of course the BBC didn't develop the iPlayer did it ...

    You tube led the way there. To the point where after massive development cost the beeb shifted the product to act more like it. I bet youporn has more viewers.

    >Damned if you don't, damned if you do.

    Well, yes, that's a fair point.

    >Sky costs three times as much and provides bugger all quality programming.

    You don't have to pay for it though. No want, no pay.

    >Hate to burst your bubble.. BBC did a trial of 3D broadcasting last year.

    Burst away, being proved wrong is to be educated as they say. I hadn't heard about that, I think there'll be a few on here deeply upset at that news. At least one unnamed individual will be screaming "bloody murder" about it.

    There's some criticism of it from a commercial viewpoint, ie. no-one wants it. You really don't know unless you try it. Ticking along producing endless radio panel games for the last 40 years might seem like a good plan if you follow that line of thinking.. oh...

  45. Tony Smith, Editor, Reg Hardware (Written by Reg staff)

    @James (not Prior - the other one)

    Every specs-requiring 3D TV we've seen of late uses polarising lenses, not red and green ones, but that's what Sky said they were using.

    Won't it be fun if they launch a 3D TV service that requires red and green glasses than none of the available tellies can use? He-He.

    FWIW, Reg Hardware remains entirely unconvinced there's any benefit to having 3D TV, for all the (two) cool 3D Imax movies we've seen. We do like Imax. We think it'll go the way of the 'interactive movie'.

    Are we right or wrong? What do you think?

  46. Anonymous Coward

    A title,

    wake me up when 3d actually means

    'help me obi wan, your our only hope....'

    not red + blue lenses, polarizing lenses or those lenticular tv (that LG do)

  47. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Tony Smith

    >but that's what Sky said they were using.

    Well, if that's what they said I guess that's what you have to report.

    My apologies for the suggestion that you just tacked it on for effect.

    >Won't it be fun if they launch a 3D TV service that requires red and green glasses

    >than none of the available tellies can use? He-He.

    But any telly can display the red and green pictures.

    What would the special hardware do?

    >entirely unconvinced there's any benefit to having 3D TV

    Ditto, but then I'm unconvinced about HD as well, yet they're all going a bundle on it.

  48. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    3D TV doesn't mean 2xbandwidth

    It has been possible for years to send a depth channel plus normal 2D video and render with a variety of formats at the receiving end. Overhead was less than 10% of the video track and is probably much better now. That ability is also a nice side-effect of one of the better technologies for processing 2D footage into 3D.

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