3D TVs are set to disappear from South African store shelves, following Samsung, LG, and Sony dropping 3D support for their displays.

In early 2016, Samsung, LG, and Philips turned their back on 3D TV, saying consumers never embraced the technology or based their buying decisions on 3D support.

This year, Sony followed suit, which means that most major TV makers will not launch new TVs which offer 3D capabilities.

In South Africa, 3D TVs have already started to disappear from the shelves of retailers like Dion Wired and Makro.

Dion Wired only stocks a handful of 3D TVs from LG, while Makro offers two 3D TVs from LG and one from Hisense.

The death of 3D TV should not come as a surprise. 3D broadcasting never caught on and having to wear special glasses to watch TV was never going to be popular.

Even Netflix’s extensive 3D movie library and the wide range of content on Blu-ray was not enough to save the technology.

3D TV demand in South Africa declining

Makro’s marketing director Melanie van Rooy said they have not seen a significant demand for 3D TVs in their stores.

“We have noted that since 2016, the majority of the TV brands have stopped shipping 3D-enabled TVs,” she said.

There are still a few TV models with 3D technology available, but Makro foresees a possible discontinuation soon – particularly with the rise in popularity of UHD TVs.

“In the last year, we have found that customers are increasingly demanding UHD 4K technology.”

Hisense dropping 3D TVs

Serena Lee, Hisense SA’s TV product manager, told MyBroadband that the demand for 3D TVs in South Africa has declined.

“3D feature requirements for TV are no longer necessary, with fewer movies currently supporting 3D, although 3D movies still exist in cinema,” said Lee.

“We can’t say that it will disappear completely. However, the demand certainly has declined.”

Lee said Hisense will not manufacture any 3D TV models this year.