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Sony Reveals 3-D HDTV Plans At IFA Show

Sony formally revealed its intention
Wednesday to launch 3-D TVs next year with plans to expand the capability to 3-D
Blu-ray Disc players, Vaio PCs and PlayStation3 video game systems.

The company said it will also continue to “accelerate its efforts
across the Sony Group to create both attractive 3-D hardware and content, and
provide new forms of 3-D enjoyment.”

Sony’s 3-D-compatible Bravia LCD TVs will incorporate frame
sequential display and active-shutter glass systems, together with Sony’s
proprietary high frame-rate technology to produce FullHD 3-D images, the company

The approach is similar to one announced last year by Panasonic
for Blu-ray Disc players and plasma displays.

In related news, Panasonic said Wednesday that it is now rolling
out three tractor trailer trucks
carrying demonstration theaters for its
forthcoming 3-D Blu-ray Disc player and 3-D plasma systems on a nationwide tour.
Panasonic’s FullHD 1080p stereoscopic 3-D products, which the company said it
will begin to market next year, use HD frame-sequential technology.

A number of companies in the CE hardware and content-production
industries are working on a common standard to enable home-based FullHD
stereoscopic displays and source components.

Sony’s announcement marks the first major TV manufacturer to
announce a Blu-ray-based 3-D system using LCD technology. In addition to 3-D Bravia
LCD TVs, Sony said it will also develop 3-D compatibility into other devices,
including Blu-ray Disc products, Vaio PCs and PlayStation3 systems, although a
projected delivery date for those devices was not revealed.

“In the growing industry of 3-D cinema, Sony has supported and
driven the expansion of 3-D by providing a wide variety of professional
equipment for the shooting, production and screening of movies in 3-D,” Sony
said in a statement. “The number of digital 3-D screens is increasing rapidly,
and is expected to reach 7,000 by the end of 2009. In addition to 3-D movies,
Sony’s range of professional 3-D products is also driving the growth of 3-D
production and distribution across a range of entertainment industries, from
theatre and music performances to sport and beyond.”

Sony said it expects to “leverage its wealth of technology and
engineering resources spanning both professional and consumer markets to bring
the optimum 3-D viewing experience to the home, from 2010 and beyond.”