Despite lingering reservations -- such as the cost and inconvenience of wearing glasses -- consumer awareness of 3DTV continues to grow. And given the high awareness of the technology among the population (mostly from movies and amusement parks) it may catch on faster than other television technologies.
"It's got a lot of positives and a lot of challenges to overcome," Char Beales, president and CEO of the Cable & Telecommunications Association for Marketing, tells Marketing Daily. "All new technologies have barriers to overcome, but this one could move along quickly."
In the study commissioned by CTAM, Nielsen surveyed and studied nearly 500 people, asking them about their knowledge and familiarity with 3D content. The respondents then watched a 30-minute clip of 3DTV programming, and were questioned about their viewing experience.
Post-viewing, 57% of viewers felt the 3DTV programming made them feel like they were part of the action, and 48% said it made them feel more engaged with the programming. Nearly half of them (47%) said 3DTV would make them watch programs they wouldn't normally watch.
"More than half said it was better than they expected, and they were more engaged with what they were watching," Beales says. Furthermore, 29% of people who said they were in the market for a new TV said they would consider a 3DTV, she says.
At the same time, more than three-quarters (77%) of consumers felt the 3DTV viewing was better-suited to special events, such as movies and sporting events, rather than every day programming.
Surprisingly (or perhaps not so, considering the way TVs are used), nearly 90% of consumers said they were concerned that 3DTV programming and viewing would interfere with their ability to multitask while watching TV. Other barriers to purchase included the high cost of the sets (68%), the need for glasses (57%) and not enough programming (44%).
Along with the traditional early adopters and sports enthusiasts who might gravitate toward a new television technology, the CTAM study revealed another possible target: gamers. According to the study, 42% of the respondents had an interest in playing 3D video games. That number jumped to 71% among people who considered themselves hardcore or regular gamers.
"Gamers are more used to an immersive experience," Beales says. "The segments more likely to be 3DTV users are gamers and moviegoers, as well as early adopters."