In the rings: Panasonic plays Games in 3D

The brand gives consumers a sneak peek of its new in-home HD 3D TV in a busy sponsorship pavilion at Vancouver's David Lam Park. 

VANCOUVER — It’s another crazy-sunny day in Vancouver when Ian Kilvert, GM corporate brand management, Panasonic Canada, meets up with MiC at the front gates of David Lam Park in Yaletown. We’re off to see the brand’s official sponsorship pavilion in the park, where Panasonic is debuting its in-home 3D technology for the first time in Canada.

The Olympics was the perfect place to debut the product, Kilvert says, due to the huge crowds that descend on the park every day and the opportunity the pavilion gives Panasonic to show consumers the product first-hand.

‘We’re getting 20,000 to 25,000 people a day in this park,’ he says. ‘It’s really nice that we can have our technology here where the masses can see it.’

As we arrive at the pavilion, we are quickly ushered into a small theatre and given 3D glasses. Soon we’re whizzing through a montage of Panasonic’s history of Games sponsorship and the 2008 Beijing Summer Games Opening Ceremonies. Then, the real treat: Panasonic has already mastered a 3D version of the Vancouver Opening Ceremonies. Kilvert jokes that it’s literally better than being there, since the ceremony was shot for a TV audience and 3D makes it feel so close.

In addition to the theatre, there are two living-room like stations set up in the pavilion, featuring the 50-inch 3D-capable TV and 3D Blu-Ray player that the brand will release this spring. On the screens is a specially-cut loop of Avatar – thanks to the brand’s partnership with the movie.

A station aimed at a B2B audience highlights efforts to make affordable, portable 3D cameras that production houses can use to start making content for the 3D channels coming to the US. A live 3D camera is set up that you can stand in front of with the glasses on and see yourself in 3D on-screen.

Another station explaining Panasonic’s environmental efforts invites visitors to write a suggestion on how to be environmentally responsible on a card, scan it and then watch it on TV as it gets uploaded into a global database with hundreds of other messages from around the world. The girl in front of us wrote, ‘I don’t know’ but MiC tried to make up for it by writing ‘Walk instead of drive.’

Panasonic’s sponsorship extends to the entire Games, as its TVs are featured in the Consortium broadcast centres and at official ‘celebration’ sites and venues around the city as well. The activation of the Panasonic Pavilion and local OOH creative was handled by Dentsu, and media was handled by Genesis Vizeum.