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Bill Radke: When the Masters Golf Tournament starts this week, it’ll get even more attetnion than usual with the return of Tiger Woods. More interesting that that I think is that for the first time, the tournament is being broadcast in 3-D. Except only a few thousand people have 3-D sets and the glasses and the right cable connection. So why spend all that money to film and broadcast in three dimensions? Marketplace’s Stacey Vanek-Smith reports.
Stacey Vanek-Smith If you broadcast an event in 3-D, but nobody is equipped to actually watch it in 3-D, was it worth all the trouble?
Absolutely, says James McQuivey, media analyst with Forrester Research:
James McQuivey: Consumers aren’t ready, they don’t have the TV sets, but when they do, the 3-D content industry wants to be ready, and so they have to do things like this.
McQuivey says networks have to get the hang of filming in 3-D, cable companies have to get used to broadcasting events in 3-D, and everybody wants to get consumers used to thinking about the technology. ESPN has plans to broadcast about 40 sporting events in 3-D this year.
It’s a big investment, but McQuivey says the industry wants to make this work:
McQuivey: It solves a big problem that they have, which is they think the Internet is making all of their dramas and comedies and news shows less valuable.
Right now, a 3-D set costs between $2,000 and $7,000. Not to mention the glasses, which are at least $50 a pop. But prices are coming down, and by 2014, it’s estimated about a quarter of TV sets in the U.S. will be 3-D ready.
I’m Stacey Vanek-Smith for Marketplace.
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