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BSkyB To Launch 3D TV Service In 2010 95

Posted by timothy
from the and-what-is-it-that-drives-technological-progress? dept.
TheSync writes "The Guardian reports that BSkyB will launch Europe's first 3D TV service in 2010. You will need the Sky+ HD set-top box, and a '3D ready' TV set (glasses-based stereoscopic system such as LCD shutter glasses or polarized glasses). Note that the first 3D TV service was from Nippon BS Broadcasting BS11 for use with Hyundai 3D sets."
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BSkyB To Launch 3D TV Service In 2010

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  • Pfft. (Score:5, Funny)

    by thatkid_2002 (1529917) on Friday July 31, 2009 @01:43AM (#28892741)
    My TV is 3d already. It's kind of a rectangular prism style shape with a curvy CRT screen.
  • pointless? (Score:2, Informative)

    by timmarhy (659436)
    the 3d effect is diminised without a wrap around screen though?
  • sheeple (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward

    I'd like to agree with the willfail tag, alas, this is BSkyB, the UK's favourite waste of money, murdoch is far, far more popular than the BBC with a certain, very large, braindead section of the british public.

    • Re:sheeple (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Rhapsody Scarlet (1139063) on Friday July 31, 2009 @03:43AM (#28893251) Homepage

      I'd like to agree with the willfail tag, alas, this is BSkyB, the UK's favourite waste of money, murdoch is far, far more popular than the BBC with a certain, very large, braindead section of the british public.

      To add to this, I'll agree with the 'braindead' part of your post. I can't see why people would praise BSkyB over the BBC, the BBC at least provide the service we're paying them for. Here, I bought a new Sky+ HD box and an HD subscription, planning to replace an old Sky+ box with a shiny new HD box and replace a regular Sky box downstairs with the old Sky+ box, giving both our upstairs and downstairs TV the ability to pause and record programs. Sky seemed absolutely fine with all this, so far so good.

      First screw up now. We should've received two new Sky cards, one for the new HD box and another for the old Sky+ box. We didn't. No problem the installers said, we'll just use the card from the regular old Sky box, put it in the HD box, call Sky so they can transfer the old card over, and we'd have full Sky HD in about four hours! We didn't. All we got were the free-to-air/view HD channels and the regular SD package channels, but none of the HD package channels, nor would the box operate as a Sky+ box, giving error messages telling us to upgrade our subscription whenever we tried to use such functions.

      What follows now is a month and no less than five calls to Sky, where we were told (and I quote) getting the box actually working "could be a week, could be a month". Despite this, Sky wasted no time in debiting my account for the full amount, including the extra £10 for the HD channels I'm not getting. We would fight for a refund, except that we tried that once when Sky mistakenly debited us for an installation that never actually happened and only ended up wasting money on phone calls only for Sky to tell us they couldn't give us our money back but they could 'credit our account' for the amount, meaning they wouldn't charge us for our subscription for a while, but Sky simply don't do refunds (I phrase it as Sky getting confused, after all we give them money, how could it possibly work the other way around?).

      As I type this, it has now been one month since I got Sky+ HD, and there is still no indication that Sky are actually going to activate the functions I'm paying them extra for. The lack of Sky+ is especially ridiculous as Sky actually changed their system so anyone with a Sky+ or Sky+ HD box (which I have) and a subscription to at least one channel package (we have four) automatically gets Sky+ without needing an additional subscription! So why do I still hit pause only to get:

      Live Pause is not available
      Call 08705 800800
      to upgrade your Sky+ subscription

      All Sky can tell us is that they're "having some problems" and will send an email to get some form filled out so they can actually provide us with the service as promised. We'd move television providers except that Sky has no competition here. Freeview isn't available due to the local transmitter not being upgraded and doesn't provide a fraction of the channels anyway. Cable is simply not available here in any way, shape, or form. So unlike with gas, electricity, broadband, or phone, there is no competition and we can't move. If this is somehow supposed to be better than the TV licence, I'm not seeing it.

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by pisto_grih (1165105)
        Get freesat.
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by teh kurisu (701097)

          I have Freesat. I was in the same situation as the GP up until the switchover [dtg.org.uk] - I was on a relay that wasn't transmitting Freeview at all (and analogue reception was quite poor), and there was no cable provider in the area. The flat I was living in had a satellite dish attached by a previous occupant, and so I picked up a Freesat HD box as soon as they became available.

          Now that the switchover has happened, I receive what my local MP is referring to [michaelmoore.org.uk] as 'Freeview Lite' - I only receive the 'public service' c

      • If they are saying they don't do refunds write to companies house and ask them to intercede they can force a company to cease trading whilst their investigation is going on. Oh and this kind of thing is Companies House's job anyway.
      • Sky customer services are shockingly incompetent. I've to deal with them plenty of times (due to the shoddy nature of the set-top boxes mainly) and it is hard to believe that they are simply useless and not actually malicious. I'd like to get a HD box, but I don't think I could face the weeks of soul-destroying hassle it would involve for them to get it installed and working correctly. The engineers they send out are generally great, but actually getting them to send the right engineer, with the right gear,
      • by VShael (62735)

        Have you heard of BitTorrent? :)

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by teh kurisu (701097)

        If you're paying by direct debit, try talking to your bank about it. Under the direct debit agreement you're entitled to a full and immediate refund from the bank if a payment has been taken improperly. This means that you'll get your money back first, and questions will be asked later.

        It's at the discretion of the bank of course, and if your contract with Sky doesn't actually guarantee you'll get anything for your money then you may struggle to persuade the bank, but it's always worth a shot.

      • 100% agree with this. You can't get HD without Sky+.

        Do what I did - write to James Murdoch. That got things moving.

        If that doesn't work - write to his Dad.

      • WTF? In Germany we have a simple principle: Someone not delivering what you have a contract on, is the same, so matter if that something is money, or anything else. So there is a law for when you can send reminders and what you can demand. And if they ignore it all, you can simply either hold back the money that you think they should not get because of their non-deliverance.
        Or you can terminate the contract without previous notice, and without any strings attached.

        And they can not do much against it. Just a

    • by Idbar (1034346)
      It seems contradictory to me: willfail and porn tags don't seem to go together! Meh, maybe it's just me.
    • Re: (Score:1, Troll)

      by petes_PoV (912422)

      braindead section of the british public

      Yawn, this trite and dismissive view is so 1980's.

      The reason people in Britain have to spend hundreds of UKP every year - on top of the £150 - or whatever it is now, tax that the government demands, to finance the BBC is because the terrestrial stations churn out nothing but "braindead" reality shows, quizzes, soap-operas and consumer programmes. For anyone who wants an alternative to the lowest-common-denominator crap we're mugged, annually, to pay for you have to get satellite or cable. Even

      • by cheftw (996831)

        And what about all those ignorant bastards who read broadsheet newspapers?

        If it weren't for The Sun's ability to "innovate liek" I'd be forced to give up on news and read /. all day.

  • Repeating Fad (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Tablizer (95088) on Friday July 31, 2009 @02:06AM (#28892841) Homepage Journal

    The 3D fad comes and goes and has multiple times since the 50's. Until it is both cheap and comfortable, it will not last.
           

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by dgatwood (11270)

      No, no, no. In the video space, porn makes or breaks new technology.... Until the porn girls look sufficiently attractive in 3D high definition, the medium won't go anywhere. Not making a value judgment here, just describing reality.

      • Was porn really responsible for Bluray? Porn is important, sometimes even critical, but not always. That said, porn will be the most common application for 3D once the technology is ready. Judging by the ever increasing population numbers, almost all women look good enough in 3 dimensions.
      • by Zixaphir (845917)

        No, no, no, no, no, no, no!

        The women already look sufficiently attractive in 3D High Definition. What we are waiting for now is for the porno studios to be able to afford said 3D technology. No visual media goes anywhere until porn can be easily made with said technology. With HD Video, the megapixel race had already made that cheap enough. Once the displays were out there and the format wars had begun, that's when the porno studios jumped in.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by dgatwood (11270)

          True enough, but with 3D, you have to factor in a lot of costs beyond the equipment cost itself. For example, you can get away with crappy sets if your camera always points in only a couple of directions and has no depth. That background showing a field behind the window suddenly looks like crap in 3D.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Culture20 (968837)
      Get ready. Many HDTVs can already do stereoscopic, and the glasses are comfortable (unless you dislike the blink rate).
      • I think it's a doomed trend. On one side you have the classic colored glasses (I got a couple pairs of these when I bought Coraline 3D last week), which throw off all of the colors of the movie just for some 3d gimmickry. On the other side you have polarized glasses, which by definition cut the light you receive in half! On the gripping hand, these glasses with screens inside are bound to be expensive one person only experiences.

        Please correct me if I got anything wrong.

    • by physburn (1095481)
      Haven't to where funny glasses just to watch the programs doesn't sound comfortable to me. And I wouldn't be surprised if people don't get eye ache out of watching it.

      ---

      British TV [feeddistiller.com] Feed @ Feed Distiller [feeddistiller.com]

  • that this will be just about the equivalent of the virtual boy for TV sets in more ways than one.

  • by ZackSchil (560462) on Friday July 31, 2009 @02:12AM (#28892867)

    HDTV gave people more detail (something they actually wanted) while at the same time freeing up a great deal of radio bandwidth in the switch to digital.

    No one wants 3D TV, so why is it being developed? Isn't market testing supposed to weed out dumb ideas like this? Hell, 3D barely maintains its status as a novelty in movie theaters, and there it's backed by huge ad campaigns and popular content. It can't even gain traction in the technology-obsessed, immersion-seeking gamer community!

    3D TV makes watching TV more complex and expensive without giving back much of value. The television is too casual a medium to complicate with shutter glasses. Until the free-standing 3D projector is invented, television should remain a 2D affair.

    • Re: (Score:1, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      3D TV is being developed to make you buy yet another Star Wars edition.

    • by rschwa (89030) on Friday July 31, 2009 @03:39AM (#28893237)

      Hell, 3D barely maintains its status as a novelty in movie theaters,

      actually, 3D is one of the only reasons to bother going to the theater vs. watching it from the comfort of my living room for a tenth the price. Some of the new 3D movies aren't too bad.
       

      3D TV makes watching TV more complex and expensive without giving back much of value. The television is too casual a medium to complicate with shutter glasses. Until the free-standing 3D projector is invented, television should remain a 2D affair.

      I agree with this.

      • by takev (214836)

        philips' 3D televisions (I think they are called WOW tv or something), is probably compatible with the broadcast.

        http://www.business-sites.philips.com/shared/assets/3dsolutions/downloads/42Inch3dDisplayUserManual.pdf [philips.com]

        The broadcast is probably done (last time I was at the international broadcasting conference) by adding a depth field to the standard 2D HD broadcast.

        From what I understand, their TV creates 9 different stereoscopic views from the 2D+depth frames. Then using the old technology of vertical strip

      • by ax1m (1392635)
        You don't need shutter glasses to watch a 3D TV - you can get screens using Arisawa's xPol technology that use circular polarised glasses, identical to the RealD cinema glasses. Hyundai, JVC and others are making these screens, and you can get an entry level one for less than $2000: http://www.inition.co.uk/inition/product.php?URL_=product_stereovis_arisawa&SubCatID_=3 [inition.co.uk] I can vouch for the fact that Sky are working on some very interesting content - sports events, concerts etc. - specialist content fo
      • by AmiMoJo (196126)

        For me it's not just having to wear special glasses that puts me off, it's that 3D can give me a headache preety easily if the director decides to do something stupid.

        I watch TV to relax, anything which gives me eyestrain is not going to work.

        • by mdielmann (514750)

          Cool. 3D is a dual-channel technology, just watch one channel.
          Red-blue 3D was out when I was a kid. I saw maybe one. I don't really want to see them again.
          I saw a 3D show at Disney World about 10 years ago, with the crappy shutter glasses. I had a headache in about 15 minutes, and it lasted for hours. And the story sucked.
          I've seen 3 or 4 of the last 3D animations in the theatre. They're amazing. I'm just stunned. I've caught myself leaning over to get a better view of things around corners a couple

    • Satellite TV is all about quantity not quality, there is no shortage of bandwidth available and even if there was the compression would just be increased a little more.

      BskyB will almost certainly include 3D TV in their base HD Satellite package for "free" at least as an introductory offer. The content providers will probably getting very little for content initially, broadcasters are not exactly falling over themselves to broadcast 3D and what content there is will probably be repeated several times a day.

    • by plasmacutter (901737) on Friday July 31, 2009 @04:26AM (#28893427)

      imagine a cult classic like akira or green legend ran butchered by 3d conversion..

      anime is by its nature a 2d medium, it's part of its artistic flavor... i dont WANT to see it in 3d.

      • by Zixaphir (845917)
        Actually, I wouldn't mind a pop-up book version of animation.
      • by bickle (101226)
        Sorry, but a blanket statement like it 'detracts from artistic integrity' is ludicrous. You sound like someone who would've fought the introduction of sound or color.
      • by T Murphy (1054674)
        If it makes their hair look even bigger I'm all for it... or their eyes, or a bit lower down...
    • by searlea (95882)

      No one wants 3D TV, so why is it being developed?

      No one wanted "User Operation Prohibited", but that sadly found its way onto most DVDs.

      Isn't market testing supposed to weed out dumb ideas like this?

      Market-testing sessions may not last long enough to distinguish novelty-factor from long-term benefits.

      The television is too casual a medium to complicate with shutter glasses.

      For soaps, sitcoms, news, games-shows and other attention-deficit programming I agree. For one-hour-per-episode big-budget series and movies - I think a lot of people will be happy to don the glasses with an "and now I shall concentrate on what I'm watching" mentality...

    • by drsquare (530038)

      HDTV gave people more detail (something they actually wanted) while at the same time freeing up a great deal of radio bandwidth in the switch to digital.

      HDTV doesn't free it bandwidth, it takes up several times more space than a normal channel. What the fuck are you talking about?

      • For broadcast TV, ATSC and NTSC both are given 6MHz bandwidth to use. Using ATSC you can squeeze multiple SD programs into that 6MHz channel.

        • by funkatron (912521)
          So what does this have to do with HD?
          • The assertion was that the new digital channels used more bandwidth than the old analog channels. That is not true, they both use 6MHz.

            • by funkatron (912521)
              You seem to be mixing up analog vs digital with SD vs HD. You correctly said that digital transmission allows several channels to be put into the same bandwidth as an analog channel because of the compression used. However, no matter what kind of transmission you use, a more detailed HD channel is going to use more bandwidth than an SD channel would use in the same transmission method.
              • I'm not mixing anything up. A digital ATSC channel even with HD programming (yes it is compressed) does *not* use more transmission bandwidth than an analog NTSC SD channel. They both are allotted 6MHz. Period. That is all I said.

                "a more detailed HD channel is going to use more bandwidth than an SD channel would use in the same transmission method."

                True, but that is not what is being discussed.

      • by Zixaphir (845917)

        radio bandwidth

        HDTV doesn't free it bandwidth, it takes up several times more space than a normal channel. What the fuck are you talking about?

        Remember all those Reading Comprehension **tests** they used to give you in school that you always scored college level in?

    • by bickle (101226)

      No one wants 3D TV, so why is it being developed?

      Quoted from the Department of Homemade Facts?

      I want 3D tv. Just like I wanted HDTV when it was in it's infancy. Seeing a football game in HD for the first time was an awesome experience. It allowed for a completely different view of the game, as you could now see the entire play develop. I can't wait to see one in 3D, and I imagine the difference will be huge.

      This is just one example, I can imagine more programming that will look significantly better in 3DHD.

      Bring it on. (And judging by the attenda

    • The value of 3d is not yet known. 3d film in 2009 is a different technology than the 3d films of the past (think linearly polarized vs circularly polarized). It is a new medium and should be treated as such. When the first films were released to the public the were nothing more than a novelty. People could not fathom the possibilites. And surely there will be progress in the language of 3d film just as there have been progressions in film language such as innovative editing techniques. There is alot to be l
  • Maybe I'm just remembering poorly, but modern 3D just doesn't seem to compare with the old red/blue 3D I grew up seeing in theme parks. The last 2 3D movies I went to were so disappointing that I swore off of them from here on out. Personally, I don't feel the whole 3D thing is worth spending money on. Now, if they were to improve it a bit, perhaps it would be more convincing... but when you have to focus hard to see the 3D, it's really not worth spending on.
    Oh, I know it's an older technology, but am I
    • by Jonah Hex (651948)

      Being old enough to have experienced red/blue 3D, I have to say I was very impressed with The Ant Bully in 3D at the Henry Ford Museum IMAX theater. Perhaps it's the IMAX that made the difference, as I have yet to watch one of the new 3D movies in a "normal" theater.

      HEX

    • by TheSync (5291)

      modern 3D just doesn't seem to compare with the old red/blue 3D I grew up seeing in theme parks.

      Perhaps your interocular distance has increased since you were a child, but the left/right disparity of stereoscopic movies has remained the same ;)

    • I swear; they're doing it on purpose. Modern 3D movies aren't impressive because they don't want them to be. I know, because I've seen a bunch of them.

      The prevailing opinion in Hollywood seems to be that releasing movies in 3D is a good way to get asses back into theater seats -- so much so that they want to be able to release all of their movies in 3D if they can. In order to achieve that aim, they need to get rid of the stigma of 3D being a gimmick. So a lot of the modern 3D movies avoid having things pop

  • not that I own both tele3d.com and net domains :P
  • And here I was thinking that 3D would be unpiratable, since the masses wouldn't have 3D TV's, and the cinemas would be safe and the movie industry would live happily ever after making 3D films, then selling the 2D version on globally released DVD (beating the pirates to market).

    And then they go and gut the golden goose ...
  • I think a lot of Sky subscribers would prefer them to fix the issues with existing HD boxes first

    1. Freezing an HD picture can crash the box
    2. Timing issues with cutoff of program ends
    3. IR interference on some boxes.

    and many many more

  • It would be great if they could alter some classic older shows for a 3D effect. Imagine the rabbit from The Holy Grail leaping out of the screen at you!

  • can i get porn channels in 3d? If not then sky 3d can suck it..... Actually hold on a second, do i really want a ginormous phallus sticking out of my tv? so no....i guess 3d porn is not that great an idea.
  • Alright, now we just need 3d compatible TVs being sold. You know those 120 Hz "truemotion" TVs you see everywhere? They don't accept 120 Hz input, only 60Hz, so they don't support 3D shutter glasses. Flagrant false advertising if you ask me.
    • by TheSync (5291)

      Alright, now we just need 3d compatible TVs being sold. You know those 120 Hz "truemotion" TVs you see everywhere? They don't accept 120 Hz input, only 60Hz, so they don't support 3D shutter glasses.

      There is a mechanism called "quincunx" or "checkerboard" which you can think of as a single frame with the "black squares" for the left eye and the "white squares" the right eye. So input video comes in at a "normal" frame rate, but only half the pixels are sent to each eye during a normal frame period.

      This ca

      • by JimboFBX (1097277)
        That is just how to transmit 3d to a compatible TV over the air using the available bandwidth. I'm saying if you buy a 120 Hz that doesn't have a "3d ready" sticker on it right now, it wouldn't take 120 hz input from any device, even your PC. Likewise, it wouldn't support the over-the-air standard you just mentioned. Its false advertising. Its implied a 120 Hz TV should accept 120 Hz input, and naturally a PC monitor input should be able to accept that but it doesn't.

Wasn't there something about a PASCAL programmer knowing the value of everything and the Wirth of nothing?

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