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British Research Shows 12 Percent Can’t Experience 3D

by Jeff Cork on Jul 12, 2010 at 03:44 AM

It seems as though nearly everyone has a financial stake in 3D in one way or another, between Nintendo’s upcoming 3DS handheld, the recent theatrical push of 3D content, and a dizzying variety of competing displays. It would be a bummer if your eyes didn’t allow you to process the effect, wouldn’t it? If you count yourself among the ranks who can’t experience the eye-popping gimmick, you’re apparently not alone. According to a study released by the British Eyecare Trust and initially reported on by Edge, 12 percent of UK citizens suffer from poor binocular vision, which essentially curbs their enjoyment of 3D technology.

Here’s some of what the health organization says:
“If you’ve experienced visual discomfort or headaches whilst watching a 3-D movie then you’re not alone. You could be one of six million people in the UK who suffer from poor binocular vision.

“3-D technology relies on our eyes’ ability to work together as a co-ordinated team to achieve an accurate perception of depth.

“However, more than one in ten of us (12%) has a visual impairment that means our brains are unable to correctly process the individual images that are transmitted to it via our left and right eyes.

“This leads to an inconsistency in viewing the three spatial dimensions (height, width and depth) required to enjoy 3-D films in all their glory.”

While the study was localized to the UK, it would be surprising if the phenomenon didn’t extend beyond that nation’s borders. Regardless, it’s unlikely that the study will change the way manufacturers approach the technology. Fortunately for those who suffer from poor vision, current implementations of 3D allow users to turn off the effect entirely or simply purchase a regular ticket in theaters.