Ericsson, Harmonic, Brevity for NBC Winter Games

winter-olympicsEricsson has been selected to provide its video contribution and distribution systems to NBC Olympics, a division of the NBC Sports Group, during the production of the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, from February 6th.

“The Olympic Winter Games is a global phenomenon and one of the most significant sporting events in the calendar. Ericsson has a strong heritage in delivering next generation solutions for content acquisition, exchange and distribution, and we are very proud that we will once again play a crucial role in enabling NBC Olympics to bring the true Olympic experience in the highest possible quality to viewers across America,” said Dr. Giles Wilson, Head of TV Compression, Ericsson. “This agreement further demonstrates our ongoing commitment to delivering best-in-class compression solutions and services.”

Ericsson will provide a range of its video processing solutions and advanced modular receivers, enabling NBC Olympics to deliver HD broadcast to millions of American viewers. NBC Olympics will also benefit from Ericsson’s specialist engineers, who, in addition to assisting with equipment/system set-up, will also be onsite 24/7 to provide multisite support for the event.

“Events like the Olympic Winter Games create an indelible impression on sports fans and we are committed to delivering a TV experience which resonates with the viewer. Therefore, it is imperative that this critical content is delivered to our viewers reliably and with the best picture quality possible,” said David Mazza, Senior Vice President, Engineering, NBC Olympics. “We are very pleased to be working once again with Ericsson, as their technology provides excellent picture quality at a highly efficient bit rate.”

Harmonic, a specialist in video delivery infrastructure, has also been selected to provide its Harmonic MediaGrid shared storage and Spectrum MediaDeck integrated media playout server systems to NBC Olympics.

NBC Olympics will use the Harmonic solution to support a “highlights factory” in which staff based at the broadcaster’s Stamford, Conn., facility will very quickly access event footage captured in Russia, create highlights clips, and make them available to mobile devices and computers. This wide-area production model facilitates cost-effective content creation by allowing NBC Olympics to maintain a significant portion of its operation in the US.

Finally, Brevity has been selected to provide simultaneous transport and transcoding technology to NBC Olympics.

Brevity will simplify NBC Olympics’ workflow and enable significant bandwidth optimisation during the Winter Games. With Brevity, NBC Olympics will render graphics on the fly while seamlessly transferring those graphics files into the Avid DNxHD format for editing. NBC Olympics will cover simultaneous sporting events occurring each day across different venues throughout the Sochi Games. The event will use Brevity’s technology to drive efficiencies by automating critical workflows needed for the production. These efficiencies in time and bandwidth savings will provide NBC Olympics with more flexibility to make edits in production material.

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