Rohde & Schwarz encoders to help Swisscom add UHD to World Cup 2018 coverage

Germany vs Argentina, World Cup final 2014

Swisscom will use Rohde & Schwarz encoding technology to help it to provide Ultra High Definition (UHD) coverage of the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

Working with Swiss public broadcaster SRG, the rights holder in Switzerland, Swissom will deliver UHD and HDR coverage of the World Cup via the SRF, RTS and RSI channels over IPTV.

Rohde & Schwarz’s R&S AVHE100 video encoding and multiplexing system will be supplied, making it possible to distribute three channels of live and pre-recorded coverage.

The German vendor will also provide technical and operational support in the period running up to, and throughout the tournament.

Swisscom selected Rohde & Schwarz after testing various UHD-capable encoding systems. A proof-of-concept project was also completed.

Bruno Haug, the head of TV development at Swisscom, said the system “employs the lowest possible bitrate, which presents major operational advantages,” adding that “this efficiency enables us to provide UHD services to more viewers thanks to some unparalleled signal chain processing technology.”

The Rohde & Schwarz’s encoder uses an HEVC algorithm developed in collaboration with the Fraunhofer Heinrich Hertz Institute.

As well as being 4K compatible, the R&S AVHE100 platform can provide high dynamic range (HDR) content.

The 2018 World Cup in Russia starts on 14 June.

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