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Toshiba follows in Nintendo's footsteps in placing a warning on 3D products

Toshiba is issuing a warning for its glasses-free 3D television about the potential harmful effects of 3D images on young children's eyes as part of an electronics industry consortium's recommendations.

Toshiba's warning closely follows Nintendo's same warning, which increased concerns regarding the possible negative effects of 3D images on children's eyesight. Toshiba made mention of the warning in a press release for its presentation at the Consumer Electronics Show, which runs this week from January 6-9.  

After releasing 12-inch and 20-inch versions of the glasses-free 3D television in December, the Japanese company plans to present 56-inch and 65-inch prototypes of its glasses-free 3D television at the Consumer Electronics Show. In the press release for this demonstration, Toshiba said, "due to the possibility of impact on vision development, viewers of 3D video images should be aged 6 or older."

Toshiba made the decision to place the warning on its products due to an electronics industry group's recommendations for 3D technology. Yuji Motomura, chief specialist in Toshiba's TV marketing department, has not released the industry group's name, but said the company has provided research about eyesight health in regards to 3D technology. The recommendation is based on whether glasses are used or not for the 3D experience.  

Despite the new warning, Motomura believes Toshiba will not see any negative consequences regarding the sales of the glasses-free 3D television. In fact, the company plans to launch a glasses-free 3D model that is over 40 inches in the fiscal year to March 2012. Specifics on what date, size or price have not been set yet, but Toshiba did note that it would offer a screen capable of displaying 2D images at "a resolution four times the quality of today's high-definition televisions." 

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By Dr of crap on 1/5/2011 12:37:51 PM , Rating: 2
Great, yet another reason my TV will be obsolete before I want to be.
3D without glasses, and BETTER resolution that what we have now, sounds good though.

RE: Great
By MrBlastman on 1/5/2011 12:51:45 PM , Rating: 3
Yet another reason to me why not to plunk down several thousand dollars on a device that will be quickly trumped. However, I don't think either of us should remain scared nor afraid to pull the trigger on a purchase.


Remember how long it took for high definition to be standardized? I remember a dreary day in 1987 (yes, 1987) where I was watching 20/20 and they were talking about high definition television. They also said it would be standardized by 1989 and be in everyone's home by 1991. The year is now 2011 and still, a large number of Americans do not have HDTV in their homes.

I have very little confidence a new standard can be agreed upon quickly due to Toshiba having quadruple the resolution.

I also see this from the article--Perhaps what Toshiba really meant was the Television has quadruple the resolution (remember, if you DOUBLE the X and Y axis you QUADRUPLE the number of pixels) in order to display TWO interlaced images in sequence to afford the illusion of a three dimensional image. I think this is what they really meant by this.

RE: Great
By nafhan on 1/5/2011 1:39:01 PM , Rating: 2
I think you may be correct about the interlacing. Makes sense to me. I kind of remember something about a polarization filter needing to be applied to the actual TV screen for that to work, though (could be wrong).
Anyway, a TV that gives you the option to watch 1080p content in 3D or watch 2D content 2160p (i.e. 4K) sounds awesome. Of course, once 3D, 4K content starts appearing, it'll be obsolete :)

RE: Great
By Drag0nFire on 1/5/2011 1:47:24 PM , Rating: 2
To be honest, when 4K sets start appearing, I feel like I'd rather have that resolution for my pc than for my tv...

Something like this:

RE: Great
By DanNeely on 1/5/2011 2:38:06 PM , Rating: 2
Quad HD isn't one of the standard 4k resolutions (the closest being 3996x2160, which is slightly wider at 1.85:1); but would make content scaling easier. Until we have a 4k consumer media standard I don't see it as much more than a gimic though. I think bluray disks would be rather marginal due to the compression level needed. Joe user might not notice as long as it's not any worse than HD streaming; but the videophiles who'd be the first to adopt it are unlikely to be as forgiving of anything less than current blueray quality.

The cabling would also be an issue. HDMI 1.4 is only 2x HD, this would need 4 (2d) or 8x (3d) though at 60 fps. Displayport 1.2 would give 4x bandwidth, but even it would have to drop down to 30/24 FPS to do 3d.

The panel does 10bit color as well, although I'm not sure if that'd need more bandwidth or not. Do DVI/HDMI/DP send 8bit color as 24 or 32 bits/pixel? If the latter then it could be packed in by using the 4th byte (no need for alpha channel data); but it seems unlikely that they'd waste that much bandwidth.

RE: Great
By Solandri on 1/5/2011 4:36:09 PM , Rating: 3
Remember how long it took for high definition to be standardized? I remember a dreary day in 1987 (yes, 1987) where I was watching 20/20 and they were talking about high definition television. They also said it would be standardized by 1989 and be in everyone's home by 1991.

HDTV back then was primarily being developed in Japan as an analog system. The bandwidth requirements were enormous, so it stagnated. HDTV didn't take off until the 1990s, when computers (digital signal processors, kinda like your 3D video card) became powerful and cheap enough to reconstruct a streaming HDTV image in real time from a compressed digital source. Kinda obvious in retrospect, but at the time very few people expected DSPs to develop so quickly.

The U.S. pioneered digital HDTV, and the Japanese admitted that all the analog HDTV research they'd done was pretty much wasted. But it still didn't take off until the FCC forced the analog to digital switchover to free up bandwidth in the airwaves. That got delayed year after year after year before finally happening a few years ago.

In short, there were a lot of pieces of the puzzle which had to come together before HDTV could become ubiquitous. 3DTV doesn't have anywhere near as many hurdles because it's just a digital signal transmitted just like HDTV signals, it's just encoded a bit differently. In fact you could probably do 3D broadcasts right now with very little change in equipment, it's just that there's almost no market for it. (Which is not to say that I think there *will* be a market for 3DTV. I don't see it happening until we get free-motion 3D, not limited to just one viewpoint. And doing that is going to require a bigger jump in bandwidth than going from analog SDTV to analog HDTV.)

RE: Great
By Uncle on 1/5/2011 10:03:42 PM , Rating: 2
You would have had it 10 years sooner if it wasn't for The Great Wall of America keeping the Japanese tech out. It seemed at the time America wanted their own proprietary technology for HD content. If I remember correctly It was a battle between Motorola and some other outfit. It was all about control of the HD market. Look around at all the adverts for HD tvs, HD video cards, etc,etc. When it comes to control of the media, visual and sound and recently ebooks, you aint seen nothin yet.

RE: Great
By Dorkyman on 1/6/2011 6:00:51 PM , Rating: 2
I was deep in it as one of the developers of a delivery protocol that didn't make it.

At the time (1986) NHK was king of the hill in HDTV technology. The Japanese were threatening to take over the entire worldwide television industry. North American Philips and Sarnoff Labs threw down every possible delaying tactic on the tracks they could, including successful demands to change from 1035 active scan lines to the now-standard 1080, and an aspect ratio change from 5:3 (or 15:9) to the now-standard 16:9.

But what did in the Japanese was General Instrument in San Diego, who proposed delivering HD via a revolutionary new compression method called "MPEG2." And that's what was eventually adopted.

RE: Great
By DanNeely on 1/5/2011 1:18:52 PM , Rating: 2
IIRC the only glasses free system in production only works with viewers in a number of relatively small locations. eg move your head a foot to the side and you'd drop out of the 3d effect. Unless they've developed something better it's still mostly a gimic, and you'd end up wanting a new model in a few years anyway.

RE: Great
By Ammohunt on 1/5/2011 1:40:43 PM , Rating: 5
Hence 3D being only a gimmick for those foolish enough to buy in early.

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