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Brier Dudley offers a critical look at technology and business issues affecting the Northwest.

May 24, 2010 at 10:42 AM

SID confab: 3D surging: iPad “cannibalizing” Kindle, netbooks

Apple’s iPad is “cannibalizing” sales of e-readers like the Kindle and Nook and netbooks, DisplaySearch analyst John Jacobs said this morning at the SID conference in Seattle.

Jacobs predicted 10 million iPads and other slates will be sold in 2010.

The research firm expects “slates will take a healthy bite” out of the e-reader market.

But that’s still just a fraction of the growing market for devices with displays in the range of 4″ to 12.5″ — including slates, e-books, netbooks, mobile Internet devices, game players and portable DVD players. Jacobs said that market will see 40 million to 80 million units sold per quarter.

Jacobs followed Sony Electronics President Stan Glasgow, who talked up the potential of 3-D in TVs and other devices, including Sony cameras and computers.

Sony surveys found that 38 percent of consumers will buy a 3-D TV within a year and 67 percent say their next TV will be 3-D, Glasgow said.

Content will be key to uptake, he said, noting Sony efforts such as its work with sports broadcasters (he played a 3’D clip from the Masters during the speech) and upcoming Sony 3-D movies, including “Spiderman 3D,” “Men in Black III” and “Green Hornet.” Glasgow said the 3-D business aims won’t distort the movie’s artistic development, saying that Sony’s mantra is that the “technology must serve the story.”

But a 3-D preview of “Resident Evil Afterlife” — a movie coming out in September — had all sorts of 3-D tricks like martial arts throwing stars spinning toward the viewer.

Glasgow called on the display industry, gathered in Seattle, to follow three principles:

— “Don’t let inferior quality own the marketplace.”

— Work together and with broadcasters and cable and satellite companies to adopt a set of 3-D standards “that makes sense for consumers.”

— Companies in the business are going to have to put effort into educating consumers about the benefits of 3-D.

Meanwhile, Sony expects the 3-D TV market to grow to 100 million units globally over the next three years.

Comments | Topics: 3D, 3D TV, Digital TV

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