BBC Sport App on Connected TVs: launches on TiVo
Mock-up of the new BBC Sport App for Connected TVs, showing live Formula 1 coverage
In my role as Executive Product Manager in BBC Future Media, I'm responsible for launching and developing BBC products - such as News and Sport - on Connected TV.
It’s a hugely exciting time to be working on such products, with the Olympics on the horizon. They are set to be the first truly digital Games and last week Roger Mosey announced that 2,500 hours of live Olympics coverage will be available in HD, via BBC Red Button and 24 dedicated channels.
My main focus for the past year has been working out how we would also make this content – which will also be available on the BBC Sport website - available on internet-connected TVs.
As such, I'm pleased to announce that today we have launched the BBC Sport app for connected TVs, enabling audiences to access the BBC’s interactive coverage of major sporting events via the BBC Red Button.
The BBC’s Red Button service has been important to BBC Sport ever since the first experiments with multi-court coverage of Wimbledon. Since then interactive TV coverage of sport has expanded to events such as the World Cup, Six Nations and the Olympics. The new BBC Sport service builds on that legacy and adds new features and options, including true on-demand video clips for the first time.
At first, the app will be available via the red button on the Virgin Media TiVo platform. This brings the service into over 500,000 homes, and provides Virgin Media TiVo viewers with access to a BBC Red Button service for the first time. Later in the year, a wider range of devices will offer the service - more details to follow.
Mock-up of the new BBC Sport App for Connected TVs, showing how the app will look between live events
Right now the application focuses on Formula 1. At any time you can watch key moments from recent races in video, as well as the entirety of the BBC’s live F1 coverage. This includes full coverage of the practice sessions (which are not broadcast on BBC One), simulcasts of qualifying heats, together with multi-feed coverage of the race itself (including our on-board camera and ‘driver tracker’ options). The BBC’s coverage of the F1 season begins on Friday 13th April.
The video walkthrough below, presented by F1 presenter Jake Humphrey, provides a quick demo of what the service has to offer.
For fans of other sports, more coverage of this year's major events - Euro 2012, Wimbledon and of course, the Olympics - will be added. More details of coverage of those events will be published on this blog nearer the time.
I'm also pleased to announce that today the BBC News connected TV service (that I blogged about before) becomes available to Virgin Media TiVo homes for the first time. The service makes up-to-date video news reports available to viewers 24 hours a day, together with a full range of text articles from the BBC News website.
The BBC News and Sport apps will continue to be made available on other connected TV devices, and as mentioned above, Sport in particular will be launching on a wide number of devices in advance of the Olympics. More details will follow later in the year.
For now, I’d be delighted to hear feedback on either the BBC News or Sport applications, and will aim to answer questions later in the week.
Aaron Scullion is Executive Product Manager, BBC Future Media
Update Jul 25 2012
I wanted to update this post to let you know that the BBC Sport application is now available on the following devices:
- Panasonic 2011 and 2012 TVs
- Samsung 2011 TVs (6000 series and upwards)
- Samsung 2012 TVs
- Sony 2012 TVs
- Sony Playstation 3
- Virgin Tivo
HD-quality coverage of the Olympics Games will be available on all devices, if you have a high-speed broadband connection.