New York - A first-of-its-kind study of 3,100 consumer 3DTV owners conducted for the Digital Entertainment Group (DEG) found a largely positive experience concerning use, enjoyment, performance and price of new 3DTV sets.
The study was released here Tuesday by Warner Home Video and DEG president Ron Sanders at a NewBay Media Summit on "Connected TV and 3D: Delivering the Demand," and after having been conducted for the DEG this spring by market research firm SmithGeiger. (New Bay is the parent company of TWICE.)
While previous research centered on consumers' preconceptions about 3DTV, the DEG said the new study, which is entitled "3DTV Owners: A Closer Look at The New World of Immersive Home Entertainment," is the first to focus on the experience of actual 3DTV owners.
Respondents were asked to assess a number of 3DTV factors, including: picture quality, perceived price differences, viewing satisfaction, content preferences, and reaction to 3D glasses.
Of the 60 percent of respondents said they view 3D content on their 3D-capable TVs, 88 percent rated the 3D picture quality positively, compared to 91 percent for their 2D picture quality.
Twenty four percent reported watching more television - both in 2D and 3D - since purchasing their new 3DTV.
Also, 85 percent of 3DTV owners consulted said they would prefer to watch half, most, or all of their programs in 3D. These consumers also reported that the majority of home entertainment in 3D is better than in 2D, with 3DTV owners naming feature films on Blu-ray as their favorite 3D programming.
Respondents said they believe the upgrade to 3D was "well worth the price," the DEG said.
The vast majority of 3DTV owners stated that they paid a relatively small additional fee for 3D capability, and that the feature made their television worth the extra dollars paid. Nearly 80 percent of those surveyed said that their 3DTVs were either less expensive, about the same, or just a little more expensive than a comparable HDTV without 3D capability.
On average, those surveyed by the DEG paid just over $2,000 for their 3DTV, with more than half paying less than $2,000.
The study also dispelled the notion that the need to wear 3D glasses was inhibiting consumer adoption, the DEG said. The study found that out of 3,100 3DTV owners surveyed, only a handful experienced any discomfort when using active shutter 3D glasses.
More than four out of five (83 percent) stated that it takes either no time or just a few minutes to adjust to wearing 3D glasses.
Additionally, of those surveyed, 74 percent own two or more pairs of glasses, with 33 percent buying an extra set during their initial 3DTV purchase.
More than half (52 percent) of the 3DTV owners surveyed said they received at least one set of glasses bundled with their television.
Owners of 3DTVs reported having an average of 2.38 pairs of glasses per home.
As for the kind of 3DTV content viewed, the study found most to watch a variety of movies, games and sports, and expect even more soon.
The findings show that feature films on Blu-ray 3D are the top 3D programming choice (78 percent), with animated movies on Blu-ray (77 percent) and nature or wildlife programs (75 percent) close behind. Football games (67 percent) and other sports were also highlighted as preferred types of home 3D content.
Regarding delivery to the home platforms, 7 out of 10 of those surveyed by the DEG use a Blu-ray 3D or 3D-capable player. Forty-four percent of those owners also purchased their Blu-ray player bundled with their 3DTV.
Many of these consumers are already using their 3DTVs to watch Blu-ray 3D movies, with most having recently purchased or rented a Blu-ray 3D title. Additionally, 22 percent purchased that movie when they bought their 3DTVs.
Also, 28 percent of all 3DTV owners reported owning a PlayStation3 system, with 78 percent of these owners having already upgraded their PS3 to watch 3D movies, while 76 percent upgraded their PS3 to play 3D videogames.
Also 68 percent have already purchased a 3D video game, and an astounding 42 percent of gamers are playing 25 percent or more of their game time in 3D. In addition to Blu-ray players and PS3s, 40 percent of owners are receiving 3D content through a cable or satellite channel.
The consumers surveyed in the DEG's study were predominantly male (86 percent) and married, (71 percent), with an average age of 51 years old. The average income was just under $99,000, although 38 percent of those surveyed reported earning less than $75,000.
Additionally, 78 percent of these 3DTV owners said that their sets are also viewed by their spouses or significant others; and 86 percent of these owners have children at home who also watch their 3DTVs on a regular basis.
The survey measured the inclinations and behavior of purchasers of 3D-compatible televisions in the U.S. from leading companies LG, Mitsubishi, Panasonic, Samsung and Sony. The majority of these owners (92 percent) own just one 3DTV, and nearly all of those televisions (90 percent) are located in the living room or family room where the entire family can use it.
Of those with a second 3DTV, nearly half (47 percent) use it primarily in the master bedroom.
The majority of 3DTV owners surveyed (89 percent) own a 3DTV that measures 50 inches or larger.
"The results of this landmark study clearly show that 3DTV owners are overwhelmingly happy with their 3D experience," said Sanders. "The research shows that the future for the home 3D platform is crystal clear - consumers are excited about all of the content now arriving on 3D."