FiOS TV to Roll Out 3D Movies On Demand

10 films to be available by year's end

Verizon's FiOS TV service is launching its biggest 3D film on demand offer to-date this holiday season, the company said Friday.

It will make available to its subscribers with the necessary equipment 10 feature films in 3D during the next two months. The pics will come from Disney and Warner Bros., and FiOS TV said more 3D titles will follow early next year.

The question is, who will be watching?

Recent projections from research firm DisplaySearch suggest that slightly less than 1.6 million 3D-capable TVs will be shipped in North America this year. It also found that purchases of 3D glasses are low, meaning that these sets might be acquired by consumers for future-proofing, rather than for immediate viewing of 3D content.

However, DisplaySearch's forecast also predicts that 90 million 3D-ready sets will ship globally in 2014.

Last year, FiOS offered My Bloody Valentinein 3D on demand. Otherwise, it has focused on one-off sports 3D offers, such as a New York Yankees-Seattle Mariners baseball game this summer and a New York Giants-New England Patriots NFL game in September.

The first on-demand movie of the holiday season 3D push will be Cats & Dogs: Revenge of Kitty Galore, which premieres on FiOS on Nov. 16. Through the end of the year, it will also roll out 3D versions of Disney's A Christmas Carol, Chicken Little, Bolt, Meet the Robinsons, Journey to the Center of the Earth, Under the Sea, Deep Seaand NASCAR events.

"Verizon is continuing to develop 3D experiences for our FiOS TV customers, and now that includes access to video-on-demand titles available at their convenience," said Tricia Lynch, director of content strategy and acquisition for Verizon. "This selection of 3D movies allows our customers to see what 3D on FiOS TV is really like -- with the advanced picture quality and sound that makes FiOS the ultimate home-entertainment experience."

A spokeswoman wouldn't comment on the financial arrangements behind getting the 3D titles.

FiOS TV's VOD service includes 18,000 monthly titles.

Cable, satellite and on-demand services make up the majority of early 3D TV content distribution methods to the home, along with 3D Blu-ray. Over-the-air broadcasters in the U.S. have been involved in testing but have not made any 3D commitments; they use their allocated spectrum for HDTV, mobile and other DTV-based applications.

Georg Szalai reported from New York; Carolyn Giardina reported from Los Angeles.

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