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ESPN To Debut All-3D Network



More and more, it seems network and cable outlets are pushing for 3D technology to become a reality at home. It sounds great on the surface, but I’m not looking forward to slapping down more cash to replace a newly-purchased HDTV for a HD3DTV. Yet, in the coming decade, that may be just what most of us will be doing.

ESPN is moving forward with plans to debut a 3D television network in the summer of 2010. Owned by Walt Disney, the pioneer sports network said that it will launch ESPN 3D, the industry’s first 3D network in June with a minimum of 85 live sporting events during its freshman year.

While 3D has been all the rage in movie theaters, the home front has not been so enthused, mostly because 3D technology is not available for mass consumption. That may change as many 3D developers will have booths at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Other walls between consumers and 3DTV include a lack of 3D programming and wearing those silly glasses.

“This will be a meaningful step to drive adoption of 3D television sets and afford opportunities for our affiliates to create value through new product offerings, and our advertisers, who want fresh sponsorship opportunities,” says Sean Bratches, ESPN’s executive vice president of sales and marketing.

Analysts state that sports were a powerful driver in the adoption of HDTVs and that if sports, specifically ESPN, have quality events in the new technology, it may further enhance its craving by consumers.

ESPN has stated that its first sporting event on the 3D channel will be the June 11 World Cup soccer match between South Africa and Mexico with other matches to follow. The channel also hopes to cover the Summer X Games, college basketball, football and the BCS National Championship game in Arizona on Jan. 10, 2011.

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