3D network coming from Discovery, IMAX, Sony

Three powerhouses in consumer electronics and entertainment will build a U.S. television network dedicated entirely to 3D programming.

Sony, IMAX and Discovery will build the unnamed network, which is scheduled to launch in 2012, PC Magazine reports. Sony will license content from its entertainment empire, including films, music and game-related material, and Discovery will do likewise with its television programming, which includes the Discovery Channel and a dozen other properties.

IMAX will supply image-enhancement and 3D technologies. It’ll also promote the network across its chain of theaters, presumably to lure moviegoers who become enamored with the latest 3D films.

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Details are otherwise slim. The companies have written a letter of intent to start broadcasting in 2012, but that’s all we know for now.

This wouldn’t be the first 3D television broadcast effort, though it could be the first to appear in the United States. Last month, LG and television network SkyLife launched a pilot program to broadcast 3D content in Korea, starting with the FIS Snowboard World Cup. LG has said it wants to expand broadcasting to America and Europe, while the BBC and Sky are both mulling a 3D broadcast of the 2012 Olympic Games in London.

There seems to be a lot of hopes pinned on sports when it comes to 3D in the home. In addition to the aforementioned developments, Sony has said it’ll use next year’s World Cup to promote its 3D televisions. This makes sense, as sports was a major driver for high definition televisions.

The new venture of Sony, IMAX and Discovery, then, is a departure. Instead of sports, the emphasis will be on films and other entertainment programming. At least there will be something for everyone who quickly jumps on the 3D bandwagon.

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