Passive 3D TV Catching Up with Active 3D Technology reports that despite the drop in picture resolution, passive 3D TV technology is proving more popular with manufacturers and demand is growing much faster than active 3D.

That is the conclusion of a report from NPD DisplaySearch which says that shipments of 3D patterned retarder optical film for LCD TV are estimated to increase 104% Y/Y in Q4’12 and forecasts passive 3D technology to account for 48% of total 3D TV panel shipments in 2013, up from 39% in 2011.

When 3D TVs first arrived on the market, the technology of choice was active 3D which uses shutter glasses to create the 3D effect.  The reasons for this was mainly commercial.  Active 3D TVs did not cost much more than regular 2D TVs as the technology was incorporated into the glasses.  This meant 3D TVs could be sold relatively cheaply and extra revenue could be obtained by selling expensive glasses.

This changed when LG introduced film-patterned retarder 3D TVs for a competitive cost.  People could use cheap glasses they kept after a trip to the cinema; did not need to worry about charging their glasses and did not have to cope with flicker.  However, passive 3D TV glasses mean each eye is only seeing half of the resolution.


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