Microsoft says we’re a “long ways away” from 3D in the living room

Friday, 8th January 2010 14:51 GMT By Stephany Nunneley


With 3D a huge topic of discussion and demonstration at this year’s CES in Vegas, Microsoft’s Aaron Greenberg has decided to throw his two-cents in, saying the technology is not something we’ll see in our living rooms any time soon.

“I think there’s a lot of questions, to be honest,” Greenberg told D’toid during a briefing. “3D is great in the theater, but for the living room? I think we’re a long ways away from that.”

Greenberg pointed out that for 3D to become mainstream, certain criteria is required – such as sitting distances and the constant need for glasses which are both potential hurdles.

“If the consumers want it? Fine,” he continued. “In the theater there’s nothing between you and the experience, but as you have other people in the room and other people walking by, well, it’s not the same experience.”

3D seems to be at least part of the plan for loads of different studios and new technology hitting the shelves.

Back in November, Ubisoft Montreal bossman Yannis Mallat said that 3D was the “wave of the future”, comparing it to when stereo sound first hit while the majority of consumers were still hearing media in mono.

During the same month, Sony told investors during a presentation that all PS3 systems were upgradeable to stereoscopic 3D via firmware updates, and the company plans to integrate 3D through Blu-ray and HDTV sets as well.

Most Mitsubishi and some Samsung Hi-def TVs on the market are 3D-capable, although this was something both firms did not advertise during ’08 and ’09, and most consumers are unaware their sets support it.

Look for that to change this year.



  1. NiceFellow

    People walking in front of you? What’s his room like? No-one walks in front of me when I’m playing a game or watching a film – no one apart from the missus anyway.

    I kind of agree with him, although the success of Avatar is making me think 3D might be more popular than I thought. But I love how you can reply on each company to spin based on what suits their offering – so MS will diss physical media vs digital even though physical media is still dominant for games/film but scotch 3D because it’s not part of their current focus.

    Same goes for Sony as well, of course.

    Guess I’d do the same for whoever is paying my wages too.

    #1 5 years ago
  2. Wakkum

    Thanks but no thanks. Although I liked it in Avatar it just annoyed me when it didn’t work (for example when certain items were in close-up). I still think it’s a gimmick, nothing more and nothing less. It’s fun in the theaters, but I don’t see it coming to living rooms.

    #2 5 years ago
  3. Dean

    I guess with 360 not being able to be upgraded to support 3D (due to the lower bandwidth HDMI 1.2 port), it was inevitable that MS would have this opinion of it at this time.

    It probably doesn’t sit well with their instant-streaming-o-matic video delivery service either. You know.. the one that means that physical media (eg: Blu-ray) was a bit pointless.

    #3 5 years ago
  4. Psychotext

    I think we’re probably about three years from any significant uptake of 3D in the living room… I guess it really depends if you think that’s a long time away or not.

    #4 5 years ago
  5. oi oi oi

    Having seen Avatar in 3D on the xbox the 360 didn’t seem to have any problems at all and it was absolutely stunning. No tearing, everything sharp and crystal clear. I was actually incredibly impressed as I expected it to be bobbins

    With Sky launching a 3D TV channel in the UK this year, and ESPN saying they are going to broadcast the world cup in 3D as well in the US the braodcasters are getting behind this and providing consumers with content.

    I don’t think it will take too long before a sizable amount of people have 3D capable TV’s

    #5 5 years ago
  6. Withnail

    Sony yesterday: PS3 will get 3D movies and games via two firmware updates in 2010.

    MS today: 3D LOL.

    #6 5 years ago
  7. Redh3lix

    Sony’s announcement as Withnail states. Also, 3D Super Stardust HD!

    Imagine playing Dead Space or FEAR in 3D! Awesome.

    #7 5 years ago
  8. Gekidami

    Sony says one thing. Aaron “The Douche” Greenberg says the opposite the next day. Why am i not surprised?

    #8 5 years ago

    Not wearing those stupid glasses.

    No. Thank. You.

    #9 5 years ago
  10. No_PUDding

    Lighten up….

    Aaron Greenberg is a good Microsoft rep. I like him, he knows when to brag, and when to be gracious. And let’s be honest, do you want 3D? And did he say it’s wrong or bad? No he just has little faith in the interest.

    Now if you want to call him out, I’d say Natal is in precisely the same situation.

    Neither of these things are spawned of consumer demand. They are both technological gimmicks that might be cool if integrated correctly.

    #10 5 years ago
  11. Psychotext

    Who replaced Pud? :D

    #11 5 years ago
  12. No_PUDding

    Hey, I still had a dig at Natal…

    I can’t get by without saying SOMETHING bad about Microsoft.

    #12 5 years ago
  13. Retroid

    I reckon it’ll be a few years yet until HDTVs are common in people’s livingrooms, let alone bloody 3D screens.

    Remember, you lot: we’re ahead of the curve on this. Most people won’t buy a new TV until the old one packs in, and even then their biggest concern would be price – if there’s a 40″ HDTV for the same price as a 22″ 3DTV, well…

    #13 5 years ago
  14. spitos

    I completely agree with his and Retroid’s statements here.
    I bought a new HD TV specifically for my PS3 2 years ago and although I am excited about 3D and loved avatar and everything else 3D, I won’t be moving, selling or doing anything else with the TV I spent £900 on other than watching it.
    No way will I fork out £1k+ just to upgrade for a minimal 3D experience, there just isn’t enough software or content that backs up the purchase of a new set… yet.

    #14 5 years ago
  15. JonFE

    It would help if companies settled for some standards in TV 3D technology, so that interested parties would make their choice.

    As it happens I’m in the market for a HD TV and would not mind factoring in my choice potential future benefits, but as it stands I don’t know what to buy to be future-proof…

    #15 5 years ago
  16. Herlock

    Poor MS, making just video games…
    Sony with music, tv show, movie, animation and hi tech (tv etc…), gone eat them alive!

    #16 5 years ago
  17. Gekidami

    MS make PC programs and OS’ to though its true that Sony’s better placed when it comes to saying when this type of stuff will atleast be more present on the market. They were at CES as the whole company and not just SCE.

    #17 5 years ago
  18. Bojanglez

    @Herlock really not sure if this is sarcasm or not? I think MS soes a few other things than video games, and unfortunately for all Sony’s expertise in various fields they are probably not as profitable as Microsoft.

    #18 5 years ago
  19. Gekidami

    It wouldnt surprise me if Microsofts biggest activity these days was video games actually.

    In the end this is pretty much just MS’ opinion on 3D and you can really sum it up to them not wanting to support it whilst Sony want to give the option of it to those that can use it.

    #19 5 years ago
  20. Herlock

    Sony make money since two years now, maybe not with the console alone but they do.
    And i dont talk about that anyway, i talk about all the stuff around video games, Sony have everything.

    #20 5 years ago
  21. Armitage

    MS: “We’re a long ways away from 3D in the living room”

    Well at least that’s honest. :D

    Anyhoo, does anyone here know if a 100 Hz HDTV would be capable of displaying 3D content? I had read it was only 120 Hz displays, but then on NeoGAF someone posted a screenshot of an nVidia 3D card’s options screen showing 100 Hz as a setting (it was recommended for certain lighting conditions). However, I have heard that monitors and HDTVs are different in this regard, I don’t understand myself. Anyone know?

    #21 5 years ago
  22. Dannybuoy

    A long ways… Interesting

    #22 5 years ago
  23. sg1974

    From the people who told you that the internet was stupid and wouldn’t take off.

    #23 5 years ago
  24. Retroid

    Actually: from the people who thought they could run their own private internet, MSN. Which was a massive success, obviously.

    #24 5 years ago
  25. Psychotext

    @Armitage: You’d need a TV that’s capable of accepting that refresh rate as well as displaying it. I have a 100/120Hz TV, but it’s just a display setting used to smooth out motion.

    Ones that accept those signals do exist, but they’re still pretty rare.

    #25 5 years ago
  26. fearmonkey

    I don’t see 3D being the big deal everyone is wanting it to be till they kill the need for glasses. I think the technology isnt there yet.

    #26 5 years ago
  27. Psychotext

    There is tech out there that works without glasses… though if you don’t sit in the right place it doesn’t work properly.

    #27 5 years ago
  28. Armitage

    Ah, thanks, PT.

    #28 5 years ago
  29. mojo

    i dont have a problem with wearing glasses.
    doing it since im 5yo..

    #29 5 years ago
  30. spitos

    Look what I found:

    What did they say about 3D then?

    #30 5 years ago

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