This year’s CES was really about just three things: 3D TV’s and overall 3D tech, E-readers, and tablet PCs (not the swivel kind, the new netbook kind). 3D gaming has been around for a year now, thanks to Nvidia’s 3D vision glasses and Viewsonic’s and Samsung’s 3D-capable monitors. This year, every TV maker is pushing 3D tech, using their own or a mixture of other software/hardware-enabled tech.
But we don’t really care about that. What we care about is whether it has a future, and whether anyone actually likes 3D. Most everyone here at CES saw Avatar in 3D (myself included) or one of Pixar’s latest 3D films, and there are enough pairs of 3D glasses on the show floor for half of China to wear.
Oddly enough, every single appointment I had started with the question, “What do you think of 3D tech?” Keep in mind I didn’t have a single appointment concerning 3D in any way, but I gave the same answer to everyone. 3D corrupts your vision.
In short, my belief is simple: we have two eyes, but we see in two dimensions. Everything is flat, though because we have two eyes we have depth perception. Still, we can tell the difference between close and far objects with one eye, though visual trickery can always change that. Point is, 3D tech today skews our vision almost to the point of being cross-eyed, and it isn’t true to our natural way of seeing.
Knowing my opinion, I went around and started asking people what they thought. Here are some of the responses:
“It’s going to be here, but we don’t have to like it.” -Random attendee
[Paraphrased] I agree, that’s not how we see things. I’m looking into possible applications for 3D, but you have an excellent point. That’s why it’s so uncomfortable. – Jim Marggraff, CEO of Livescribe
“It’s bad enough that most consumers have just moved up to HDTV’s, now we have to move again to 3D TV’s? The only applications I see for [3D] is for PC gamers, using those special [Nvidia Vision] shutter glasses and specialized monitors.” – Random attendee met on the bus to the airport.
“We’re releasing a 3D monitor, but I just can’t use them. I get all cross-eyed.” -Acer Spokesperson
“Well, I mean [Dark Void] looks great in 3D, but you’re not the first one to say it’s too much. I don’t have that problem, but I’ve played so much in 3D that I’m used to it. -Shana Bryant, Associate Producer on Dark Void, Capcom
I kept asking around and got a lot of non-answers, mostly from supposed PR reps who were actually booth babes, or people who were uncomfortable answering because their company was currently producing such a product. However, I’m not the only journalist at CES who couldn’t stand 3D tech.
What do you guys think?