BSkyB Bullish about 3D

BSkyB will launch its dedicated 3D channel next year, and Gerry O'Sullivan urged delegates to see the special BSkyB demo, which showcases opera, ballet, and more modern music as well as documentary, movies and sport.

"But let me immediately dispel a few urban myths that have been thrown up about 3D," he said, during the 'Who pays? Winners and losers in the new broadcast economy' session. "You don't have to stand on your head, or be exactly 1.2 metres away from the screen. Nor is it the old Hollywood movies of 30 or 40 years ago. It does not give you a headache. Our HD transmissions require no new technology. The SKY+HD infrastructure carries the signal end-to-end, and we simply piggyback 3D onto our HD investment. Stop reading about 3D, and start watching."

The winners in this business are those who invest in content and continue to invest in innovation," he continued. "The only way you can do both is to have a sustainable business model. If you don't have a sustainable model and you cannot fund innovation then you are going to find life can be very difficult."

O'Sullivan says that 2009, despite all the doom and gloom, would see UK pay-TV subscribers top the 50% (of all TV homes) mark. "Remember the sceptics who said pay-TV wouldn't last. Well, to get to 12.5 million pay-TV viewers in the UK is a massive achievement. Subscription revenues are now larger than the total TV advertising revenues. That tells a story on its own. The problem is with broadcasters who are totally reliant on advertising income, and they undoubtedly have some challenges ahead."

By Chris Forrester, IBC E-Daily