BBC offers 24 HD channels of Olympic coverage, Sky snaps it up
The BBC has announced that it will make its twenty-four, HD-quality, live Olympic streams available to cable and satellite providers, on a non-exclusive basis, for the duration of the Olympic Games. And BSkyB was the first broadcaster to immediately say it would take them, offering 48 channels, including SD mirrors, to its 10m subscribers in the UK.
As with the rest of the HD channels on the Sky platform, the new channels will be broadcast in 1080i. The BBC’s Olympics coverage will also be accessible via the BBC Red Button.
Stephen van Rooyen, Managing Director of Sky’s Sales and Marketing Group, said: “The London Olympics is a huge event in 2012 and one that we are all looking forward to here at Sky. We believe that the best way to watch the Olympics is in glorious HD as it offers viewers the best possible viewing experience and, supported by Sky+, the flexibility of watching the action at a time that suits our customers. We’re delighted that every single Sky home will have the opportunity to enjoy unprecedented coverage of the biggest UK sporting event in a generation.”
Previously the BBC has promised to broadcast up to 24 simultaneous streams live online, giving a platform to every Olympic sport for the first time ever.This service will complement the BBC’s flagship channels, BBC One and BBC Three, which will air all of the key moments from the Olympics, as well as other platforms including Radio 5 live.
Combined, this coverage will deliver around 2,500 hours of live sport coverage through the various BBC platforms during the Games.
Roger Mosey, Director, BBC London 2012 said: “We’re delighted to be able to offer this opportunity to cable and satellite providers to extend our online service to millions of TV viewers across the UK. BBC One and BBC Three will remain the flagship channels for the Olympics. But, as the London 2012 Olympic Games will be the first truly ‘Digital Games’, we wanted to offer an unprecedented amount of live sporting action to the widest possible audience through these 24 live streams, giving vastly more choice than ever before.”