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Sports Applications Technology

BT Sport Builds Efficient Production and Playout System on Harmonic Video Infrastructure

August 01, 2013


BT (News - Alert) Sport is leveraging Harmonic’s video infrastructure in order to build a new scalable, efficient production and playout system for its new sports television channel. Harmonic (News - Alert) is a provider of video delivery infrastructure and its processing, storage and playout systems enable fast-turn production and support for timely, high-quality broadcasts of high-profile live sports.

BT Sport is free with BT broadband and is available via the Sky Digital Satellite Platform, BT TV with Infinity and online. Its new channel will be launched on August 1 in the U.K. and Ireland. The BT Sport facility is purported to broadcast BT Sport 1, BT Sport 2 and ESPN (News - Alert) and will show 38 exclusively live football (soccer) matches from the Barclays English Premier League, as well as FA Cup and UEFA Europa League.

Ian Graham, vice president of sales in EMEA at Harmonic, remarked, “Harmonic video infrastructure enables leading media companies to achieve fast, efficient delivery of content while maintaining the highest video quality standards. The interoperability, performance, and reliability of our processing, storage, and server systems allow users such as BT Sport to leverage all their resources effectively in creating exciting and engaging content for their viewers.”

BT Sport said that the objective to build a new production and playout system is to kindle collaboration that brings the best of industry and to make BT Studios a world-class hub for the best ideas and talent. The company believes that talent attracts talent, and its partnership with Harmonic helped foster that mindset.

Harmonic’s Spectrum (News - Alert) product family is the ideal platform for streamlining media production and broadcast operations and implementing file-based workflows. Possessing a modular architecture, Spectrum is used by producers and television professionals worldwide to support efficient tapeless television operations, while ensuring maximum reliability and flexibility.

For BT Sport, at each production site, a 1-petabyte Harmonic MediaGrid scalable shared storage system tightly integrated with EVS integrated production management systems is being employed to cater to the high-bandwidth demands along with delivering work-in-progress storage capacity.

Harmonic Spectrum playout servers with Spectrum MediaPort real-time video encoder/decoders and SAS (News - Alert)-based Spectrum MediaStore storage arrays are being used for reliable and scalable play while the Harmonic’s ProStream 1000 stream processing platform and NMX Digital Service Manager carry the main services for the BT Vision Platform, which includes BT Sport.

Edited by Rachel Ramsey