Firms to Standardize Active-shutter 3D Glasses

Aug 10, 2011
Satoshi Okubo, Nikkei Electronics

Panasonic Corp, Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, Sony Corp and X6D Ltd agreed to form an alliance for standardization of technologies related to consumer glasses used for active-shutter 3D displays (3D active glasses) Aug 9, 2011.

The four companies will collectively manage the licenses of the technologies that they developed for 3D active glasses capable of realizing full-HD 3D display. They named this action as "Full HD 3D Glass Initiative."

The companies plan to start licensing by September 2011. Currently, each of the companies sells active-shutter 3D TVs. But the specifications of their 3D active glasses are not the same. By forming an alliance among major TV makers and 3D technology providers, they aim to enable to use a pair of 3D active glasses for 3D displays manufactured by various makers and improve convenience for users.

There are two types of 3D active glasses. One uses an infrared (IR) system for communication with a 3D display while the other uses a Bluetooth-based radio frequency (RF) system. And the latest agreement is related to both of them.

In regard to 3D active glasses technologies using IR systems, the companies will start to license the protocol that Panasonic and X6D co-developed and announced in March 2011, a protocol developed by Samsung and a protocol developed by Sony. As for 3D active glasses technologies using RF systems, they will develop a protocol, aiming to start to license it in September 2011. Currently, Samsung uses 3D active glasses using an RF system for its 3D LCD displays.

After the licensing starts under the Full HD 3D Glass Initiative, the "Universal Glass," which can be used for active-shutter 3D TVs manufactured by each of the four companies, is expected to hit the market in 2012. It seems that the Universal Glass can be used for active-shutter 3D TVs released in 2011.

The Universal Glass does not necessarily support both IR and RF systems. And it seems that there are a model supporting only IR systems and a model supporting only RF systems.