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Ericsson, BT showcase live HEVC 4K broadcast

At IBC 2016, Ericsson, BT Media and Broadcast and BT Sport are showcasing their first-ever live demonstration of a high efficiency video coding (HEVC) contribution link used in the delivery of 4K ultra-high definition television (UHDTV). The high performance single-slice HEVC link will be used to broadcast live rugby matches on BT Sport in 4K during Round 2 of the AVIVA Premiership. The broadcast will be delivered using BT’s new links truck.

Together with Ericsson, BT Media and Broadcast (BT M&B) is showing how UHDTV content can be broadcast through one single slice, without any signal stitching. Ericsson’s new encoding/decoding technology supports HEVC and removes the need for complex AVC quadrant based UHDTV contribution.

This technique offers TV service providers savings of up to 40 percent on bandwidth usage with far greater network efficiencies, as it only requires the use of one encoder/receiver to deliver optimal picture quality.

Elisabetta Romano, Vice President and Head of TV and Media, Ericsson, says: “Ericsson and BT have a proud history of working together to push boundaries in immersive TV, and this latest 4K HEVC project highlights our focus on delivering new and improved services to today’s demanding consumers. This demonstration shows we can drive better quality, operational simplicity and bandwidth efficiency, giving far greater cost-efficiencies in UHDTV delivery by contributing all the video content in a single slice. This is a turning point in UHDTV, making 4K live sports and events a practical, cost-effective and high-quality reality for the first time.”

Mark Wilson-Dunn, Vice President at BT M&B, adds: “We’re delighted to be using Ericsson’s state of the art encoding/decoding equipment for our 4K broadcast at IBC. The combination of the new equipment with our new UHD links truck will deliver unbeatable high-quality sports footage to viewers at this year’s event. I’m looking forward to sharing our joint innovation and how we’re delivering an even better service to our customers with the rest of the industry at IBC.”

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