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Blu-ray Disc Assn. Embraces 3-D HDTV

The Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA) issued a statement last week formally declaring its plans to incorporate 3-D technology into the Blu-ray Disc format.

“The rapid and enthusiastic consumer adoption of Blu-ray Disc, coupled with the format’s technical capabilities and capacity, make it the ideal format for bringing a vibrant 3-D experience to consumers,” the group of Blu-ray-supporting hardware and software companies said of the plan.

“The BDA intends to take full advantage of the format’s high bandwidth and capacity to achieve the very highest possible quality 3-D experience,” said Victor Matsuda, BDA global promotions committee chairman. “Just as Blu-ray Disc has paved the way for next-generation, high-definition home entertainment, it will also set the standard for 3-D home viewing in the future.”

The association, which lists members from major motion picture studios, and the IT and consumer electronics industries, said it is working on a uniform specification to ensure consistent delivery of 3-D content across the Blu-ray platform.

“The association is examining a number of criteria and at a minimum, the specification will require delivery of 1080p resolution to each eye and backward compatibility for both discs and players, meaning that 3-D discs will also include a 2-D version of the film that can be viewed on existing 2-D players and 3-D players will enable consumers to playback their existing libraries of 2-D content,” the statement said.

“Consumer adoption of Blu-ray continues to grow at a very steady pace,” said Bob Chapek, Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment president. “The 3-D theatrical market has been very successful this year. We are just now seeing all of the true capabilities of 3-D, and with Blu-ray Disc’s superior technical characteristics, as well as the broad industry support of the format, it makes it the ideal packaged media platform for 3-D home entertainment.”

The current BDA efforts provide individual companies with the technical information and guidelines necessary to develop and announce products pursuant to their own internal planning cycles and timetables, the group said.