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Cable Technology Feature Article

April 05, 2010


By Divya Narain, TMCnet Contributor

DIRECTV is going to add ESPN 3D to its 3D lineup, which already includes DIRECTV's newly named linear 3D channel, N3D powered by Panasonic (News - Alert). ESPN 3D is the first 3D sports television network in the industry.

Starting in June, DIRECTV HD customers will be able to enjoy ESPN's entire 3D programming lineup, including up to 25 2010 FIFA World Cup matches, free of charge. DIRECTV will provide customers a free software upgrade. They would however need 3D television set and 3D glasses to view 3D programming.

The channel will also present a minimum of 85 live sporting events during its first year, beginning June 11 with the first 2010 FIFA World Cup match, featuring South Africa versus Mexico. Other 3D events in the offing are X Games 16, 2010 college football ACC Championship, 2011 BCS National Championship game, college basketball and NBA games in 2011.

“Watching ESPN (News - Alert)'s comprehensive lineup of sports programming in 3D will be like having your own virtual seat at all of your favorite sporting events around the world. We are excited to be the first and only distributor to announce the launch of ESPN 3D and we look forward to announcing additional 3D partners throughout the year,” said Eric Shanks, executive vice president, DIRECTV Entertainment.

“ESPN and DIRECTV recognize the groundswell effect 3D has already had on the television industry in the last few months. This agreement is the first step in providing sports fans access to exciting, dynamic content, as well as providing our affiliates new opportunities to provide cutting-edge product offerings to their subscribers,” said David C. Preschlack, executive vice president, affiliate sales and marketing, Disney & ESPN Networks Group.

N3D powered by Panasonic will deliver the best 3D programming from programmers such as AEG/AEG Digital Media, CBS, Fox Sports/FSN, Golden Boy Promotions, HDNet, MTV, NBC Universal (News - Alert) and Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. DIRECTV will also offer 24/7 3D pay per view channel and a 24/7 3D DIRECTV on Demand channel, beginning this June. In another article, TMCnet reported that DIRECTV has added PASIONES, the 24-hour channel dedicated to “Telenovelas,” on its Más platform, on channel 444.

Divya Narain is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Divya’s articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Kelly McGuire