BBC 3D Olympics Moves Closer to Reality

The BBC has said that is looking to video both the opening and closing ceremonies of the London Olympics in the 3D format. However, the corporation has emphasized that while it intends to capture the Olympics in 3D, this is not committing to their transmission. Last week, the BBC’s head of 3D and HD Danielle Nagler told the 3D Masters Conference that in addition to the ceremonies selected events from the 2012 Summer Olympics would also be included.

“The BBC is considering a small number of 3DTV editorial experiments in the lead up to the 2012 Olympics. These experiments will be undertaken with editorial and technology partners to explore the creative potential of the new format, evaluate the different technology options and help us contribute to the standardisation process,” a BBC spokesperson told Broadband TV News. “As is always the case with technological innovations, BBC is committed to exploring 3D developments in television on behalf of licence payers to examine how they may add to the delivery of our public service objectives.”

Any 3D coverage would have to be discussed with the BBC’s fellow members in the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) and would ultimately need to be approved by the host broadcaster, Olympic Broadcasting Services (OBS).

The prospect of 3D coverage of the Olympics was first mooted at IBC 2009 by the BBC’s director for London 2012 Roger Mosey. He indicated the possibility of an Olympics both in 3D and Super HD, largely delivered to public displays. Since then the launch of regular 3D services by broadcasters including BSkyB and ESPN has brought the prospect of an in-home service closer to reality.

By Julian Clover, Broadband TV News