LG has joined Samsung and Panasonic by bundling 3D glasses and software with its 3D TVs in select deals.
Since actually watching 3D TV in the home requires not only a new TV but 3D-compatible hardware, expensive 3D glasses for everyone, and, yes, something in 3D to watch, TV makers are using bundles to promote 3D.
LG is the latest, joining other TV makers Samsung, Sony, and Panasonic. According to LG's press release:
Consumers who purchase any LG LX9500 or LX6500 LED HDTV paired with the LG 3D Blu-ray Disc Player from participating retailers, will receive two free pairs of the 3D active shutter glasses, a $100 instant rebate, and a bonus redemption certificate to receive Warner Home Video's Blu-ray 3D title "IMAX Under the Sea 3D" by mail while supplies last.
3D will still cost a bundle, however. At press time, the least expensive LG 3D TV, a 47-inch LX6500, costs about $2,300, so buying the qualifying BX580 player ($300) and factoring in the rebate brings the total cost to about $2,500. That's eerily similar to the $2,500 entry price for the Samsung UN46C7000 ($2,200) and BD-PC6900 ($300), which together qualify you for a similar "3D Starter Kit" with, yes, two pairs of glasses and a Blu-ray disc.
Sony and Panasonic, for their parts, are rewarding 3D TV purchasers with vouchers for free 3D discs (and games in Sony's case) and not--at least not yet that we know of--tying discounts into the purchase of a 3D Blu-ray player. 3D-seeking owners of the Sony PlayStation 3, at least, have little reason to buy a separate player since that console will receive a 3D Blu-ray upgrade in September.
If you're comparing, all four makers are charging around $120-$150 per pair of 3D glasses, and only Panasonic (one pair) and Sony (two pair with just one model, the LX900 series) include them with the TV. The spectacles are incompatible across brands, so owners of Sony glasses won't be able to use them to watch LG TVs, for example.