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Online chat biz Skype says it has developed 3D video calling - but it doesn't know when it will roll out the feature, if at all.

Having to yell at your parents overseas that they need to turn off normal video if they want to have enough bandwidth left to hold anything akin to a decent non-time-lapsed conversation is not enough for Skype, it seems, as Microsoft's corporate vice-president for the VoIP biz, Mark Gillett, confirmed the confirmed the tech is in the works. Obviously, you'll need 3D-capable equipment - perhaps a rig of cameras and an expensive telly - to get it to work.

"We have it in the lab, we know how to make it work and we're looking at the ecosystem of devices and their capability to support it in order to make a decision when we might think about bringing something like that to market," he told the Beeb.

Don't expect to see the option popping up on Skype screens soon, though. Quite apart from persuading people that buying 3D-friendly TVs or computer monitors is worth it, there's also the problem of how 3D videos can be made at home.

"The capture devices are not yet there," Gillett said. "As we work with that kind of technology you have to add multiple cameras to your computer, precisely calibrate them and point them at the right angle." ®

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