Sony to show World Cup in 3D

It probably won’t be like sitting at the game, but Sony’s hoping it can use 3D recordings of the World Cup to sell consumers on the technology.

In a deal with FIFA, Sony will record up to 25 of next year’s World Cup soccer games in 3D, The Globe and Mail reports. But the electronics giant isn’t planning to show the games right away to 3D television owners in their homes. Instead, the games will be shown in booths at FIFA events in Berlin, London, Mexico City, Paris, Rio de Janeiro, Rome and Sydney in June and July.

Later, Sony will sell a video version of the highlights for home viewers.

FIFA3D

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Sony is betting big on commercializing 3D in the years ahead. Next year, the company will release its first 3D-capable home television, and has said that over a third of its television line will include 3D features within three years. In 2010, Sony also intends to release a firmware update for the Playstation 3, allowing it to play 3D games without the need for a special disc.

Howard Stringer, Sony’s chief executive, has high hopes for 3D movies as well. He told the Globe and Mail that he wants to see “thoughtful” movies in the third dimension, probably to combat any perceptions that 3D is a gimmick that’s only good for cheap thrills in blockbuster movies (that’s my feeling on the matter, anyway).

As for the World Cup, Stringer said sports are an area where 3D can display its strength. I guess that depends on how the games are shot. If it’s a typical top-down camera angle, I’m not sure the illusion of players popping off the field will be all that exciting. On the other hand, penalty kicks will probably be a blast to view in 3D.

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