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CYBERSPACE: Prices for 3DTV sets are plummeting just four months after hitting the U.S. retail market. A new 3DTV set can be had from Amazon for $1,655.98, without shipping. That same 3DTV, a Samsung 40-incher, was nearly $2,000 just a few months ago. Likewise, prices for Samsung’s 46- and 55-inch 3DTVs have dropped by more than 30 percent since they were first offered in March. The adult-sized shutter glasses necessary to view the 3DTVs hit the market at around $150. They can now be found for around $120.

The decline is reminiscent of when high-definition TVs were introduced into the market nearly 10 years ago. The first sets were giant, bulky monsters priced between $5,000 and $10,000. Within six years, a 37-inch LCD high-def TV could be secured for less than a grand, as can a new 50-inch plasma today.

The Panasonic 3DTV Viera plasmas appear to be holding their price points, but they were just introduced into the U.S. market last within the last few weeks. The company also slashed 3DTV set prices to half of what they were in Japan even before rolling them out here, The Wall Street Journalsaid. Panasonic introduced 50- and 54-inch 3DTV sets in early May for $2,600 and $3,000, respectively. This month, 58- and 65-inch models were rolled out. Amazon (opens in new tab) is offering those sets for $3,600 and $5,000 respectively.

Sony, the official sponsor of ESPN’s new 3D channel, is just now coming to the U.S. market with 3DTV sets. 3D-capable Bravia’s became available for pre-sale last week at the Sony Style Web site. Only two have built-in 3D capability, a 60-inch set listed at around $5,000, and a 52-incher listed for about $4,000. Three more models--40-, 46- and 55-inches--will require a peripheral $50 sync transmitter as well as the $150 active shutter glasses to display stereoscopic 3D.
-- Deborah D. McAdams

May 19, 2010: “Panasonic Adds Video Calls and 3D Discs to TV Deals”
The electronics maker is activating Skype video call capability to its 2010 Viera Cast-enabled HDTV sets, and the bundling to Blu-ray titles with its emerging 3DTV sets.

March 3, 2010: “3DTVs Hit the Market”
Samsung beat the rest when it started offering the UN46C7000 and the UN55C7000 LED edge-lit, 1080p sets at online retailer Amazon.