Global communications provider Tata Communications has completed another successful proof of concept with Formula One Management during a recent Grand Prix. The new technology test delivered a live trackside feed from the track during the September Singapore Grand Prix to Formula One Management’s Technical HQ in Biggin Hill, UK – with no time lag between the live broadcast and the footage viewed on the app.
The OTT service test demonstrated how the Formula 1 fan experience could be enriched through new technology. “It is very interesting to prove that, with the latest equipment and techniques, it is possible to achieve an online delivery of additional content with no delay relative to the main live programme on the screen,” commented John Morrison, Formula One Management’s Chief Technical Officer.
The live OTT video feed was delivered using Tata Communications’ global fibre network and the company’s Media Ecosystem. This converted the feed into different bit-rates – while providing a consistently high quality, real-time viewing experience – regardless of internet bandwidth or device. Unlike traditional OTT services (which often result in a lag of around 25 seconds between a live event and an online feed) Tata Communications demonstrated its capability to deliver an online feed with no delay.
“Technology continues to evolve at great speed and that is why we, together with Formula One Management, continuously work together to test new capabilities,” explained Mehul Kapadia, Managing Director of F1 Business at Tata Communications. “Delivering a successful low latency feed to an app is another landmark step in our shared innovation journey.”
This latest proof of concept follows a 2014 season test where Tata Communications became the first company to deliver a live 4K feed from a Formula 1 event. Live footage was delivered end-to-end over Tata Communications’ network Biggin Hill. Demonstrated to an exclusive group of broadcasters, the live delivery highlighted the next generation 4K broadcast capabilities afforded by fibre-optic cable, and illustrated how the future of 4K sports broadcasting could look.
Separately, Tata revealed that it had joined forces with Net Insight, a specialist in the transport of live, interactive and on-demand content, to enable media organisations to manage and deliver live OTT content globally, in complete sync across all devices, for the first time.
According to the pair, the powerful combination of Tata Communications’ Media Ecosystem, including its Video Connect service, and Net Insight’s industry-first OTT solution, enables media organisations to manage and distribute a video feed from any location globally to any device, without any delay, for a truly real-time, interactive and social TV experience, and to better monetise high-value live sports and music events.
“The OTT market is growing rapidly, driven by people’s hunger to watch their favourite shows, anytime, anywhere, on any device, but to-date, the time lag with OTT content delivery has prevented its widespread use with live events,” noted Brian Morris, Vice President and General Manager, Global Media and Entertainment services, Tata Communications. “By building Net Insight’s innovative technology into our global Media Ecosystem, we are empowering media companies to manage, deliver and broadcast live OTT content in sync, anywhere in the world, and to harness live sports and music events for additional revenues, as people’s evolving content consumption habits continue to disrupt the industry.”
“With Net Insight’s live OTT solution, the game has changed for live content consumption,” observed Fredrik Tumegård, CEO of Net Insight. “The combination of our technology and Tata Communications’ Media Ecosystem is ground-breaking, as it provides a ready-made live OTT infrastructure for media organisations to capitalise on what might be the biggest revenue generation opportunity that the industry has seen in many years.”