Stream TV Banishes 3DTV Glasses

It doesn’t matter whether you’re a one-eyed Cyclops or a three-eyed alien being locked away deep in some secret laboratory in Area 51 - no one likes the idea of wearing glasses to watch 3D video. Stream TV hates glasses for 3D, too, and this morning they showed off the company’s Ultra-D technology that can produce a glasses-free 3D image that’s watchable across a wide range of viewing angles. (Just to eliminate any confusion, “glasses-free” doesn’t mean you get “free glasses” with the system. It means you don’t need no stinkin’ glasses at all to watch 3D on the screen.) According to Stream TV, the proprietary technology can be used with all types of displays; and they anticipate we’ll see Ultra-D technology in everything from flat-panel TVs to tablets to smartphones.

Ultra-D is based on a proprietary algorithm that mimics your natural eye without requiring the use of head-tracking. The result is that you can have a dozen or so journalists spread out in front of a 40”+ flat-panel HDTV - and all of them will see a 3D image. (As happened in at the end of the press conference. The majority of the press conference, by the way, was presented in real-world, actual, living 3D. I think giving the press conference using cardboard cutout characters would have been a cool gimmick, but Stream TV doesn’t consult with me for their marketing techniques...)

The company made the bold claim that the Ultra-D technology can produce glasses-free 3D images with no ghosting or sacrifices in image quality, in addition to providing “around-the-corner” views. And the system can generate 3D video from 2D in real time. The 3D level is adjustable to suite the viewer’s particular preference - all the way back down to full 2D. Stream TV thinks Ultra-D is so phenomenal that people will start watching just about everything that involves a screen - TV shows, sports, movies, video games, photographs, and etc. - in 3D. In fact, they predict that 2D video will become the equivalent of black & white video.

The short demonstration of 2D video converted to 3D that was given at the conclusion of the press conference began with a trailer for an upcoming action movie with Bruce Willis that was very disappointing due to the almost cartoon-like effect the 3D conversion produced. Everything after that, however, was extremely impressive, including 2D-to-3D-converted video segments of football games, video games, and nature scenes. As promised, the 3D effect was maintained at a wide variety of viewing angles; and the picture quality was quite good.

The first displays to appear on the market will likely be in the 42- to 55-inch range, although Stream TV couldn’t release any of the details at the press conference.

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