In a move to bring back attention to its flailing TV service, Verizon has struct a deal with the National Football League to air its first ever 3D football game on TV. It's a major score as the most mainstream sporting event to make it to the new broadcast medium. Since stereoscopic 3D sets first became available earlier this year, live sporting events have become the undeniably biggest draw for live 3D programming. But so far, it's mainly been the secondary sports, the ones only a select group of people watch, like golf and soccer.
On Sepember 2, the New York Giants and New England Patriots will face off at Meadowlands Stadium, where an entire army of brand new 3D cameras will capture the match in a way that no one has ever recorded football before.
Bringing football games into high definition was credited as one of the biggest selling points of HDTV when that technology was just getting off the ground.
"This is the next major step in our development of 3D experiences for our FiOS TV customers. Broadcasting the first 3D NFL game delivers on our promise to FiOS customers to provide a superior TV offering, including 3D, HD and VOD programming, as well as interactivity that cable can't match," said Verizon VP Terry Denson in a statement.
3D content on live TV is still scarce, and even scarcer are TV providers that actually offer the limited content available. DirecTV has a handful of 3D channels and it offers, by far, the most 3D TV content, but even it hasn't gotten the rights to all available programming. And despite there being dozens of hours of broadcast 3D content that has gone over the airwaves in the last few months, millions of subscribers to big-name providers like Time Warner Cable and Dish Network, have not had access to any of it.
The Giants vs Patriots game will be available to Fios customers in the Northeast on September 2, with 3D programming beginning at 6:45 PM Eastern Time.