Interactive TV News Round-Up (II): DirecTV, ESPN, BBC, Wimbledon
--DirecTV, ESPN Offer Interactive TV Coverage of Wimbledon Tennis
--ESPN Will Also Offer Wimbledon Coverage on Web and Mobile
--BBC Unveils Interactive TV Plans for Wimbledon
Due to the large volume of news generated over the past few days, we are covering today's stories in abbreviated round-up/summary form:
- DirecTV is teaming with ESPN to offer exclusive interactive TV coverage of the Wimbledon tennis championship. "ESPN Interactive TV will be enjoyed exclusively on DirecTV and extended this year by a day to include the first seven days of competition, culminating on the second Monday," ESPN states in its press materials. "The day, commonly referred to as 'the best day in tennis' is when all singles participants--men and women--are in action in the round of 16. A six-screen mosaic will include the ESPN2 match and feeds from five individual courts. Production will be enhanced with press conferences, interviews and features elements that will be added during court changeovers and between matches. All six screens can be expanded to full-screen mode or picture-in-picture at the touch of the remote button. In addition, DirecTV will offer 'Matches On Now,' a graphic across the bottom of the screen with scores from each of the matches currently on the court channels, with the ability to tune directly to the match, and 'Results,' an instant look at real-time scores and schedule info for matches ahead--all without leaving the match the viewer is watching. In total, ESPN will provide more than 350 hours of coverage that is exclusive to interactive TV."
- The interactive TV coverage of Wimbledon on DirecTV is part of an extensive multiplatform Wimbledon offering from ESPN. Among other things, 1) ESPN3.com will provide "a multi-court offering with live play, including a simulcast of ESPN2's coverage, from all nine TV courts plus press conferences totaling nearly 650 hours," as well as on-demand replays of all four semifinals and both finals. 2) ESPN 3D will "present its first tennis action with the Gentlemen's Semifinals and both the Ladies' and Gentlemen's Finals." 3) "The WatchESPN App, for fans with Apple or Android devices and who receive ESPN's linear networks as part of their video subscription via Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks or Verizon FiOS TV, will present ESPN2's live coverage, in addition to ESPN3.com's multiscreen offering." And 4) "ESPN Mobile TV will carry over 77 hours of live coverage including the Men's and Women's Semifinal rounds, more than double 2010's offering."
- The BBC has also announced plans for extensive interactive TV ("red-button") and multiplatform coverage of Wimbledon: "BBC Red Button will offer a choice of up to six live matches, plus a highlights service and replays of the top matches," the corporation states in its press materials. "Viewers will also be able to switch between commentary and no-commentary options on selected live matches. When there is coverage on BBC One and BBC Two, Freeview will offer a choice of up to three matches. A digital text service will also be available with news, results and score updates. A match highlights package will also be available once play has finished each day. The BBC Sport Web site will show live video from selected matches, including the showpiece courts, every day, as well as on-demand video highlights. Users of the Web site can also enjoy the 5 Live coverage, read our popular live text commentaries, view photo galleries and see results and schedule information. Away from the BBC site, tennis fans can interact with our journalists on Twitter and there's also a new BBC Tennis page on Facebook (facebook.com/bbctennis). BBC iPlayer will be offering up to two full matches every day of the tournament. 'Today At Wimbledon' will also be available on demand from BBC iPlayer."