Exactly how "on-the-fly" conversion actually renders on a TV remains to be seen. Neither company offered a demonstration during separate press conferences.
The concept behind the conversion technique is using a Cell or other power processor to fill in blanks by creating two separate images -- one for each eye -- out of a single frame. Asked if there is any video content more suitable for such a real-time conversion, Toshiba's Uchiyama said, "Not really, but you do need sharper original content to begin with" for the process to work.
The Cell engine used in Cell TVs includes eight processor cores, offering 200 gigaflops, with each processor running at 3.2 GHz, according to Scott Ramirez, vice president of marketing for Toshiba's TV group. "That's 10 times faster than a standard desktop PC," he added.
That much processing power allows Toshiba's Cell TV to offer "super resolution" by generating missing high-frequency pixels, "net resolution+" technology that uses compression noise cancellation for Internet content and "auto view" features that adjust brightness and color temperature based on where the TV is located.
Cell TV hardware features include: a 1-terabyte hard-disk drive that allows the TV to function as a home entertainment server; a Blu-ray player; wireless HD; and 802.11N for wireless multi-room connections.
Toshiba's offered few other technical details about the U.S. version of its Cell TV.
Hence, it's unclear whether Toshiba's Cell TV will use a 60-GHz wireless HD solution from SiBeam or 5-GHz Wireless HDI technolog from Amimon, although Toshiba has previously demonstrated Cell TV models with 60-GHz wireless technology.
Atsushi Murasawa, president and CEO of Toshiba America Consumer Products, when pressed, agreed that 60-GHz wireless is "more likely."
Toshiba offered no predictions on how many pricey, feature-rich Cell TVs it may actually manage to sell here. But company executives said they are determined to migrate Cell technologies into other Toshiba products.
For instance, Toshiba will manufacture its own Cell processors at Oita fab in Japan. Two years ago, Sony transferred to Toshiba the assets of Oita TS Semiconductor Corp. (OTSS), a joint venture between Toshiba and Sony.