Report: Despite Slow Start, 3D TVs Will Become Mainstream in 2014

Paul Lilly

For whatever reason, TV makers are apparently confuzzled about the general lack of interest among consumers in paying a premium for 3D television sets, only to unbox them and be disappointed by a lack of 3D content. And that's on top of the nuisance of wearing a pair of 3D glasses. Yet according to market research firm DisplaySearch, the 3D TV segment isn't growing as fast as TV makers expected. Gee, imagine that!

It's not all bad news on the manufacturing front, however. DisplaySearch also says 3D TVs are on pace to reach mainstream status by 2014, at which point the 3D TV market will grow from 3.2 million units shipped (2010) to over 90 million.

"While TV manufacturers have bold plans and a lot of new products, consumers remain cautious," said Paul Gray , Director of TV Electronics Research. "Consumers have been told that 3D TV is the future, but there still remains a huge price jump and little 3D content to watch."

North America remains a particularly tough market to crack, as those in the good ol' U.S. of A. are more than willing to wait for price drops.

"North American consumers in particular appear to be playing a waiting game," noted Paul Gagnon, Director of North America TV Research. "Set makers have trained consumers to expect rapid price falls for new technology, and consumers seem happy to wait a little."

This, DisplaySearch says, is the reason why 3D shipments in the U.S. won't even breach 1.6 million units this year.

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