Sony’s 3D Experience channel shutting down March 31, 2014

The 3D Experience channel, operated by Sony, is a 3D content channel delivered to Internet connected Sony 3D TVs and Sony 3D Bluray compatible players.

Sadly, there is a message on the channel indicating Sony is shutting it down effective March 31, 2014.  The channel carried demo clips of 3D music videos, wildlife and travel video, some of which was shot on their Sony 3D consumer camcorders, by professionals. Does not look like they had updated the content since perhaps 2012, however.

Sony has also discontinued their Sony TD30V 3D consumer camcorders. Professional 3D gear remains available from several manufacturers, but 3D consumer content tools seems to be rapidly disappearing.

Sony also sold its Vaio PC division last month. The electronics and camera makers have seen terrific drops in revenue and profits.

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Sony discontinued the TD30V 3D camcorder

I do not know when this occurred but it was canceled as of the January CES and shows as a discontinued product in the Sony online store. The product remains available at retailers, such as at Amazon.

The camera and consumer electronics companies have all seen multi year slow downs in sales. In the video area, for cameras and TVs, the new push is for 4k. 4k makes a lot of sense for content creation but there is almost no consumer market to watch 4K and there still is no distribution mechanism for 4K video except for Youtube.  Netflix says they will introduce some 4K distribution soon too.

Sadly, this means there are now no more high quality, consumer-accessible 3D video cameras available.  These all-in-one products did a good job for shooting 3D within a limited depth box out to perhaps 30 (10 m), and sometimes 50 feet (16 m). Beyond that, paired cameras with wider lens spacing produce better quality 3D images.

Consumers are seeking out 3D content but it remains a niche market in the home – nearly all top selling movies in 2013 were 3D movies, and 3D Blu-ray sales were up nearly 100% YoY. But there does not seem to be much interest in shooting one’s own 3D except by serious hobbyists and professionals.

I expect the 4k content creation tools – in other words, cameras – to be a very good selling market for some time to come. Certainly more profitable than the consumer 3D camera market.

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