Remember when HD television was introduced? News anchors and daytime soap stars rushed to their plastic surgeons, worried that the new technology would expose every line and lump. With this week’s debut of high-definition 3D-capable televisions in Canada, the small screen’s biggest celebs are sure to be reaching for the Botox once again.
Samsung unveiled its line of 3DTVs on Friday, with prices ranging from $2,500 for a 40-inch to $4,000 for a 55-inch. Add on $250 for rechargeable glasses ($230 for kids’ glasses), $400 for a 3D-enabled Blu-Ray disc player, and $70 to $350 for a new HDMI 1.4 cable. For those with deep pockets, the LCD models are now for sale at Best Buy and Future Shop, with plasma models up to 63-inches available next month.
Sony Canada announced this week that Canadians can pre-order the company’s new 3D-capable LCD HDTVs. Their LX900 series will sell for $3,000 (40-inch) to $5,500 (60-inch). The HX800 series comes in screen sizes of 40-inch to 55-inch, retailing for $2,600 to $3,800. Other manufacturers have announced plans to launch 3DTV, including Panasonic in May.
The sets themselves are thinner than regular plasma and LCD televisions, work with standard 2D programming, and use Wi-Fi and Internet streaming technology. 3D should prove ideal for video gaming, sports and animation, but there are currently only three movie titles available in the new format, and no 3D channels or shows (although ESPN and Discovery Channel expect to start 3D programming this year.)
So, as consumers wait for prices to come down, let’s hope that Larry King Live, Rock of Love and The Biggest Loser are all taken off the air before the new technology becomes widespread.