Ericsson, BT Media and Broadcast and BT Sport are to screen the first-ever live demo of a high efficiency video coding (HEVC) contribution link used in the delivery of 4K ultra-high definition television (UHDTV).
The high performance single-slice HEVC link will be used to broadcast live rugby matches on BT Sport in 4K ultra-high definition during Round 2 of the AVIVA Premiership. The broadcast will be delivered using BT’s new links truck.
Mark Wilson-Dunn, Vice President at BT M&B, says: “We’re delighted to be using Ericsson’s state of the art encoding/decoding equipment for our 4K broadcast at IBC. The combination of the new equipment with our new UHD links truck will deliver unbeatable high-quality sports footage to viewers at this year’s event. I’m looking forward to sharing our joint innovation and how we’re delivering an even better service to our customers with the rest of the industry at IBC.”
BT Sport’s rugby coverage – and an accompanying demonstration of 4K technologies have been a feature of the Ericsson stand in recent IBCs. Back in 2013, Ericsson and BT also produced the world’s first multi-camera production of a sporting event, displaying it live in a 4:2:2, 10-bit resolution, 4K UHDTV signal at 60 frames per second using AVC. Last year, Ericsson and BT Sport announced that they would work together to launch the UK’s first UHDTV channel.
“Ericsson and BT have a proud history of working together to push boundaries in immersive TV, and this latest 4K HEVC project highlights our focus on delivering new and improved services to today’s demanding consumers,” said Elisabetta Romano, Vice President and Head of TV and Media, Ericsson. “This demonstration shows we can drive better quality, operational simplicity and bandwidth efficiency, giving far greater cost-efficiencies in UHDTV delivery by contributing all the video content in a single slice. This is a turning point in UHDTV, making 4K live sports and events a practical, cost-effective and high-quality reality for the first time.”
BT M&B will deliver the signal to Ericsson’s Playout Centre in Hilversum, Netherlands, and Ericsson will broadcast the rugby matches live and direct to Ericsson’s booth at IBC 2016 (#1.D61), as well as to BT M&B’s booth (O.C01), located in the outside exhibition area at the RAI Amsterdam Convention Centre.