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Glasses-free 3D TVs years from market

Samsung downbeat on the tech.

Korean Consumer electronics giant Samsung reckons it'll be "difficult" to release glasses-free 3D tellys within the next 10 years.

Just coming up with a working prototype will take five years, it said.

Sony has of course bet big on stereoscopic 3D, investing heavily in the tech for its TVs, movies and gaming on the PlayStation 3.

For many, having to wear active-shutter glasses to see 3D visuals turns them off to the tech, with some waiting for true glasses-free stereoscopic TVs to launch before forking out their cash.

That wait, according to Samsung, will probably be lengthy.

"Considering our current technology, we can make glasses-free 3D TV in R&D level, however it can be viewed from only a few viewing spots," Samsung told the Wall Street Journal.

"To make naturally viewed glasses-free 3D TV, for instance in a living room where several people can watch TV from various angles, it needs at least 32 viewing spots.

"We believe that creating a prototype for lab-grade glasses-free 3D TV, broadcasting system and display will take about five years.

"For mass commercialization to become possible, manufacturing costs must come down and TV broadcasters will have to upgrade infrastructure, which includes securing transmission band.

"Attempts to put glasses-free 3D TV to market within the next 10 years will be difficult."

In October last year a study suggested 80 per cent of gamers were willing to wear 3D glasses to play video games.

Sony, predictably, insists that wearing 3D glasses isn't as big a problem as many claim. "With the latest technology, the glasses are light and you kind of forget you're wearing them after a while," president of Sony's Worldwide Studios Shuhei Yoshida said last year.