Is 3-D the Future of Entertainment?

Oswaldo Diaz

Back and bigger than ever, 3-D has once again captivated audiences worldwide but will this revival stand the test of time and become a staple in modern entertainment, or will it remain as an on-again, off-again fad?

The industry certainly has high hopes,
flooding us with products, from movies to video games. Even prime time television had a taste of 3-D when a special tribute to Michael Jackson encouraged everyone to wear 3-D glasses at this year’s Grammy Awards.

Innovations in 3-D technology have definitely fueled the explosion of the genre. Movies are now being shot in “RealD” which replaced the terrible red/blue overlay and allows for viewers to tilt their head and look about the theater naturally without a disturbing loss of 3D perception . Theaters are also increasing their number of 3-D capable screens to cash in the phenomenon.

Video game developers are currently working on a variety of 3-D games that will release for PC, PS3 and Xbox 360. TV manufacturers such as Sony, Mitsubishi, Samsung and others have a variety of 3-D TV’s ready to ship in the coming months as consumers will be eager to acquire them before the Fifa World Cup in SubAfrica later this year.

With 3-D oozing from every orifice of the entertainment industry, it would be naive to assume that audiences will remain as interested in the months to follow. Especially when the market is being saturated with movies like “Jonas Brothers: The 3-D Concert Experience,” “Hannah Montana: Best of Both Worlds Concert” or both “Toy Story” films.

These movies, like many others, are being slapped with 3-D visuals just to cash in, and in return deliver few, if any, memorable 3-D moments. Everyone wants a piece of the pie, but could this eagerness to deliver 3-D content before its charm wears off turn consumers away, and condemn 3-D once again to fad status?

The entertainment industry remains positive in the longevity of their cash cow. It has invested far too much money for consumers to dismiss the trend. This will likely result in big companies partnering with different media outlets to force 3-D into our lives and convince the public that 3-D is better than your current 1080P HDTV, and your flat 2-D movie or video game.

While 3-D may be a nice addition to your viewing experience, it is not an improvement. It simply offers a different perspective, not necessarily a better one. The image might pop out, but its resolution, as of now, does not exceed that of full HD, which nowadays is very accessible thanks to the price drops on many HDTV sets.

Manufacturers are betting big on an uncertain payoff as consumers have only just unboxed their new high-definition TV’s making them unwilling to spend more on upgrading again any time soon.

Fortunately for the marketplace, we live in a materialistic society that will likely embrace 3-D as a must-have novelty.
The huge investment the industry has made will not go to waste, and it will do anything in their reach, from billboards to commercials, to making sure they get their money back and get a head start on what they believe is the next big thing. However, it is still too early to tell what the outcome will be; consumers will either see through the gimmicks and realize that 3-D is a pricey alternative to entertainment, or will succumb to the industry who will brainwash consumers into thinking they need a 3-D TV to keep up with “the future of entertainment.”

People have always valued simplicity and while novelties come and go in this busy world, few have innovative ways to change the way the whole world looks at something. We have seen it before and will witness it again; the rise and fall of 3-D.