Verizon FiOS will take a swing at 3D, as the telco video provider has signed a carriage deal with YES Network for its coverage of a pair of New York Yankees-Seattle Mariners games in the format in July.
The July 10 and July 11 contests from Safeco Field in Seattle will mark the first Major League Baseball games in 3D. YES, the regional sports network home to the Yankees, is working in conjunction with DirecTV and its RSN, FS Northwest in televising the game in the advanced format.
In addition to DirecTV, YES officials said they had initiated discussions to make the 3D telecasts available to other providers within the RSN's "home team footprint" of New York State and Connecticut, north and central New Jersey, and northeast Pennsylvania.
The deal with YES, terms of which were not disclosed, marks Verizon's first strides down the basepath with the format: it is currently developing a formal 3D offering that will be available in time for the winter holiday shopping season, when 3D television sales are expected to spike.
FiOS did not have the opportunity to offer MSG's coverage of the March 24 National Hockey League game between the New York Rangers and Islanders in 3D.
FiOS TV customers who live in New York City, Long Island, parts of New Jersey, and Westchester, Rockland and Putnam counties will have the chance to see the YES 3D programming. Customers must have a high-definition set-top box, a 3D television set and 3D glasses. Verizon officials said the telco will provide interested subscribers with a free manual-adjustment procedure so the set-top box can sync the 3D signal with the 3D TV, which is required to watch this YES Network 3D telecast.
"This 3D offering from the YES Network represents Verizon's continued commitment to bring FiOS TV customers a high-quality TV experience that includes the best programming available," said Terry Denson, vice president of content strategy and acquisition for Verizon in announcing the deal "We are providing FiOS TV customers with the first 3D baseball telecast, over the country's only all-fiber network -- proving once again that Verizon delivers the top-rated TV service with the best HD and the broadest viewing choices.
"We believe the 3D images of the action on the baseball field will be so real that viewers truly will feel like they are in the front row," Denson continued. "FiOS TV viewers who see baseball in 3D will be tempted to duck their heads at the first foul ball that zips their way on the screen."
Verizon is currently developing a formal 3D offering that will be available in time for the winter holiday shopping season, when 3D television sales are expected to spike.