DirecTV Providing Interactive TV Coverage of French Open Tennis Championship
Satellite TV provider, DirecTV, is offering interactive TV coverage of the French Open tennis championship. The company says that it will offer over 350 hours of interactive coverage during the championship's first eight days, thanks to partnerships with the Tennis Channel and ESPN2.
The company is dedicating one of its signature "mix" channels (channel 701) to the championship: the French Open Mix channel's multiscreen mosaic offers simultaneous live HD coverage of up to six matches (the network feed, plus five bonus channels of outer-court coverage that DirecTV says are exclusive to its platform). Viewers with interactive receivers can use their remotes to highlight each of the French Open Mix channel's component channels and listen to its audio feed, or press "Select" to tune directly to a full-screen version.
In addition, by pressing the red button while watching one of DirecTV's "court channels" (i.e. the channels of which the French Open Mix is composed), viewers can access various interactive options: 1) "Match Guide," which provides live scores and a schedule of upcoming matches; 2) "Recent Results," which provides scores for both completed matches and matches in progress, and which also lists which players are getting ready to take the court; 3) "Men's Draw and 4) Women's Draw, which DirecTV bills as "a complete round-by-round chart [which] will show you which players are still in it and which players are headed home."
DirecTV's interactive TV coverage of the French Open will be available in its entirety through May 30th, while the Results and Draws options will continue to be available with the Tennis Channel's and ESPN2's live broadcasts through the championship's June 6th final.
According to DirecTV, its interactive TV tennis coverage is proving popular with viewers. The company says that its ITV coverage of January's Australian Open championship saw a 29% increase in application usage and a 46% increase in application impressions over the previous year; that average daily viewing time was over 106% higher among app users than non-app users; and that cumulative viewing time was almost 344% higher among app users.
DirecTV is also offering French Open coverage on its DirecTV On Demand service. The coverage includes a preview of the event and daily highlights.