BBC Olympics – Super Hi-Vision and Connected TV Plans

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Speaking to sister site, Tim Plyming, Project Executive, Digital & Editor of Live Sites for the BBC’s London 2012 Olympic team, revealed ambitious plans to make the London Olympic coverage the world’s first truly digital television Olympics. He also echoes many others saying that Super Hi-Vision is a more natural experience to 3D.

review dividing line BBC Olympics   Super Hi Vision and Connected TV Plans

London Olympics venues 300x164 BBC Olympics   Super Hi Vision and Connected TV Plans Referring to the 24 HD streams being made available for UK audiences, Plyming said that a huge amount of metadata, usually only available for sports commentators, will be made available for the first time to the public which will allow viewers to navigate the games coverage on connected TV in a similar way to an online experience.

“Connected TV and gaming devices will be a hugely important part of what we are doing.” Plyming told the new site. “To take the kind of data we are putting onto the online experience into the connected TV environment and allow the audience to be able to navigate through all of those streams is very exciting when it comes to connected TV.”

Speaking abut the Super Hi-Vision coverage, Tim Plyming, like many other people who have seen it, believes the ultra high definition format could even pose a threat to 3D saying…

“A lot of people come out saying it is more 3D than 3D. The definition around the side of the objects is so sharp that your brain feels that it is looking at reality. It’s a much more natural experience in some ways to 3D – you are not aware that you are watching an illusion and you are not wearing glasses.”

In the exclusive interview Plyming revealed that Super Hi-Vision cameras will be moved outside of the Olympic venues to capture life in London in the lead up to the games. People living in Bradford, Glasgow and London will have the opportunity to watch both live and pre-recorded 45 minute packages on purpose built Super Hi-Vision screens. Tickets will be free and the shows will feature a variety of content.

When asked what the BBC’s stance on 4K is, Plyming was unable to provide the official line but said “My feeling is that 4K will be a staging post through to 8K. Whether that is the domestic environment or the large screen environment is something I think we are yet to see. I think what will happen is, as audiences see 4K and 8K, they will demand it a lot sooner than some people are predicting”.

As the BBC are not the host broadcasters (which is the role of the OBS) Plyming said there will be no new BBC innovations.

The BBC have come under critiscm recently for planning to show a very limited amount of the 200 hours of 3D footage being made available. Such sentiment was probably best summarised by 3D Focus reader LWilkes who wrote …

"Pathetic coverage from the BBC.If they are incapable of broadcasting more than a few hours in 3D they should be forced by the Olympic committer to give it up to Sky would would do it full justice, like NBC in the USA who will be showing all 200 hours of 3D on its dedicated 3D channel.Meanwhile in our own back yard we get 5 or 6 hours…. Epic Fail."

You can read for the full Tim Plyming interview on Display Focus