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Forecast: A Fifth of all TV Buys Will be 3D by 2013

While there's still ongoing debate about whether stereoscopic 3D technology will catch on for the home screen, an increasing number of forecasts appear to see continued growth in 3DTV as a given. Latest case-in-point: A new study by In-Stat concludes that by 2013, about 20 percent of all new American TV purchases will be 3D-enabled.

Accordingly, year-over-year shipment growth will be 231 percent between the start of 2010 (six months ago) and 2011 — resulting in what In-Stat said would be a doubling of the installed base of 3DTVs in American homes and businesses.

Following the successful deployment and rapidly accelerating adoption of HDTV in America, In-Stat said, "3DTV promises to be the next significant innovation wave for living room entertainment." While relatively few U.S. consumers currently own 3D-centric equipment (including 3D Blu-ray players), retailers point out that 3D units usually tend to sell out quickly when available.

Ironically, one key factor likely keeping a sharper 3D penetration spurt in check is the fact that more than half of American homes have already purchased one or more HD sets in the recent past, and the remaining households plan to buy HD panels within the next year or so, according to various studies from NPD Group, iSuppli, and other analysts.