Nearly 17 per cent of homes will have a 3D ready television by 2016, although only a third of those homes will actually be using them to access 3D content, according to the latest predictions from Informa.

Informa Telecoms & Media suggests that 3D TV penetration will increase hugely in the next five years, but that it will be future-proofing, rather than a desire to consume 3D content that drives consumer demand.

The report suggests that the current level of 0.2 per cent of households that have a 3D ready TV will rise to an impressive 16.9 per cent (around 236.2 million households) by 2016.

However that significant growth is being driven by a change from manufacturers rather than by consumer demand.

Mixed reception

"Public reaction has been mixed – due to both a lack of content but also a simple failure of the public to engage with what is, essentially, a new type of viewing experience," states Informa.

"…with mainstream adoption becoming a much harder sell, the emphasis has changed to a future-proofing strategy.

"By depicting 3D as the cutting edge of technology, CE manufacturers can use it to attract TV set buyers to replace their sets by convincing them that a compelling 3D environment will eventually be in place, so they should equip themselves for it now."

Of course, as the report points out, this isn't just cynicism from the manufacturers but also the fear that their own wares will not sell if rivals have an extra edge – like 3D – even if that isn't what people are desperate for.