3net Debuts Sunday 2/13/11

The long-anticipated debut of 3net, a 24/7 3D network co-founded by Discovery Communications, Sony, and Imax, is set for Sunday, February 13, 2011, at 8:00 PM ET, when it will be carried on DirecTV's channel 107. Those who tune in that evening will see China Revealed, followed by Into the Deep, which took the Imax 3D camera underwater for the first time, and Forgotten Planet, a look at the "strangest places on Earth."

Of course, the number of people watching in 3D is likely to be relatively low—according to TV Technology's report, fewer than 700,000 3D TVs have shipped in the US by last fall, while Samsung claimed the number was over a million as of CES in January. That's a drop in the bucket compared with DirecTV's 19 million subscribers, but that could change as more 3D content becomes available.

The network promises to broadcast a new program every night in February at 9:00 PM ET, aiming to develop the largest library of native 3D content by the end of this year. Still, there will no doubt be lots of repeats for a long time to come, so don't worry if you miss a show—you'll have plenty of other opportunities to see it.

DirecTV is no stranger to 3D. It was the first TV provider to offer a 3D channel with ESPN 3D last June, and it launched three of its own 3D channels—n3D and n3D On Demand (sponsored by Panasonic) and Cinema 3D—on July 1, giving it the largest lineup of 3D content of any provider. Happily, DirecTV does not charge extra for its 3D programming, which is available to all subscribers with an HD package.

For more on the programs you can expect to see on 3net, click here.