I played on Nintendo’s 3DS recently, and I have to say, I thought its ‘3D’ feature was rubbish (sorry Ant). It works by displaying two images on one screen, via a process called autostereoscopy. Basically, each eye views a different set of pixels, which display a different image; this apparently creates the illusion of depth in a perceived image. I won’t lie, the ‘3D’ feature did appear more ‘3D’ than its 2D equivalent, but it’s not as impressive as it’s advertising campaign makes out. You have to sit at the right distance and angle for the ‘3D’ to work – I either completely failed in getting this position, or this feature is just another glorified gimmick.
The push for ‘3D’ technologies recently has left me slightly concerned for those who buy into it. ‘3D’ televisions, games, handheld consoles, movies, and computers, most of which require glasses, will be quickly surpassed by advances in the ‘3D’ field, leaving consumers rolling with outdated tech. The ‘3D’ corner isn’t that new either, with film stretching as far back as the 1890s running in some form of ‘3D’. This history suggests to me that ‘3D’ viewing is a recurring phase, and will leave you getting laughed at by your friends for hemorrhaging the extra $$$ you pay for a ‘3D’ compatible TV set. But I digress – you could argue that everything is just a phase.