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Canadian cable TV provider Videotron to use Sensio 3-D technology

Videotron, an integrated communications company based in Quebec, will launch 3-D content to customers in December over its standard 2-D infrastructure using Sensio’s 3-D technology and consulting expertise.

As part of its broadcasting activities, the cable-TV distributor will work with Sensio to provide an immersive TV experience, regardless of whether the subscriber’s set is 3-D or standard HD. The hope is that adding the new 3-D channel will reduce subscriber churn and provide a competitive advantage.

For 3-D TV sets, programming will be offered in the Sensio 3-D format, which enables broadcasting of 3-D content over a conventional 2-D infrastructure via cable, satellite or IPTV, while providing video to common frame-compatible formats.

The companies said Sensio 3-D delivers visually lossless 3-D images using a process called quincunx (checkerboard compression), which are so faithful to the originally captured images that the difference is imperceptible to the eye of the viewer.

For non-3-D-enabled TVs, Sensio will provide an anaglyph image, which is viewed through inexpensive red-and-cyan lens glasses. Anaglyph images are used to provide a 3-D effect when viewed with glasses where the two lenses are different (usually chromatically opposite) colors. Images are offset with respect to each other to produce a depth effect.

Usually the main subject is in the center, while the foreground and background are shifted laterally in opposite directions. The picture contains two differently filtered colored images, one for each eye. When viewed through the color-coded anaglyph glasses, they reveal an integrated 3-D image.

With these Sensio technologies, Videotron’s customers will be able to view a variety of 3-D content, including movies via VOD, sporting events and concerts.

On its website, Sensio said its 3-D HD decoder, which also features JVC’s real-time 2-D-to-3-D conversion technology, decodes 3-D content and formats in several supported stereoscopic formats ranging from anaglyphic, 3-D DLP to dual-stream and alternating images (page flipping).

Sensio’s technology is compatible with codecs including MPEG-2, MPEG-4 or VC1 and allows distribution of 3-D content through conventional 2-D channels and playback on any display device.