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Early-adopter adult entertainment industry still lukewarm on 3D format

Polls conducted amongst its 6,000+ members by, an online social network for adult entertainment industry executives and qualified stakeholders, indicated a more conservative attitude towards 3D than was evident with some other technologies.

Historically, the adult entertainment industry has been an early adopter, driver and trend-setting populariser of new technologies. Significant examples include VHS tapes, CD-ROMs, digital cameras, DVDs, online payment processing, streaming video, and digital rights management.

How will 3D impact the world of adult entertainment? Research results published in The 2012 XBIZ Research Report: Attitudes, Views and Trends Impacting the Adult Entertainment Industryshow that 52% of respondents believe there will be limited consumer demand for 3D and only a select number of producers will profit. Another 29% reckons there will be little to no demand, while only 19% said 3D will usher in a new era of substantial profits for the industry.

But while most adult film producers, already challenged by the proliferation of free online content, won't be rushing to adopt 3D technology, a handful of top adult film studios are exploring its potential.

Hustler Video, which received national media coverage in 2010 for This Ain't Avatar XXX 3D, now has the ability to shoot exclusively in 3D and has launched a new slate of adult parodies using the immersive format.

Another leading studio that has invested in the format is New Sensations. The parody specialist has already teamed with Funky Monkey Media, which produces only 3D movies, releasing a parody of the James Bond classic Octopussy and a number of follow-ups.

Meanwhile, Penthouse Video has not only aggressively ramped up 3D production (the company now reportedly shoots all of its films in 3D), but in early 2011 launched the first 3D adult channel - Penthouse 3D - on Europe's Astra Network.

"In both Hollywood and adult entertainment, whether 3D turns out to be a passing craze or becomes entrenched as the new standard will depend upon the usual factors: demand and profit," says XBIZ. "However, the current level of adult 3D production suggest that most adult entertainment will remain 'flat' for the time being. If it lasts, modern 3D may go down in history as the first burgeoning technology that took off without a major boost from the adult entertainment industry."

"It seems that 3D is certainly not there yet," says Steven Hirsch, founder & co-chairman of leader Vivid Entertainment. "This could change quickly when glasses-free 3D televisions finally make their way into the market-place. Unfortunately, this won't happen overnight and until then it?s really a non-starter."

"The cost and the logistics of shooting this type of movie [in 3D] have prohibited the vast majority of producers from adopting the technology," says Dan Miller, managing editor of XBIZ. "Without question, a company with 3D offerings in its portfolio can en gage the most technically savvy of adult video consumers and at best tap into a part of the viewing public that others cannot reach. And 3D tech nology can also be the centerpiece of a focused marketing campaign. However, in this tough economy with the amount of free porn available online, most consumers are not basing their buying decisions solely on whether a movie has been shot in 3D."

XBIZ also asked its members whether smartphones and tablets will overtake traditional desktops/laptops as consumers' primary adult viewing devices. 43.8% of those polled answered that mobile devices will indeed become the primary display. 38.5% disagreed, saying that desktops and laptops would remain the primary platform. Another 17.7% felt that internet-enabled TVs would supplant other devices as the viewing platform of choice for adult entertainment.

Story filed 03.08.12

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