NEW YORK—The Switch supplied connectivity to this year’s French Open, where it delivered HD feeds via dedicated fiber paths to the main broadcast and streaming rights holders, including the Tennis Channel, ESPN and Nine.
As the primary connectivity provider for the French Open, The Switch extended its network capability in France to enable a 100% IP-based production environment conforming to SMPTE ST 2110 standards, the company reported. The all-IP media workflow permitted the separate transport of fully uncompressed video, audio and data from 17 courts at Roland Garros to Los Angeles.
This also improved the types of coverage the rights holders were able to provide to fans. The SMPTE ST 2110 integration meant more camera feeds were carried from the Paris venue, offering tennis fans worldwide significantly more viewing options, with simultaneous live feeds of different matches being made available.
The Switch’s robust delivery network enabled Tennis Channel to reach its largest audience yet for the men’s singles semifinal between Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal on June 11, reaching 511,000 viewers.
“The Switch is at the forefront of innovation when it comes to the delivery of live tennis coverage and we are proud to have supported the main broadcast rights holders with high quality feeds,” noted Nicholas Castaneda, senior vice president of sales at The Switch. “We are excited to be among the industry players leading the way in integrating the SMPTE 2210 standard into live media workflows. It is great to see broadcasters such as Tennis Channel fulfilling the promise of full IP workflows for live event coverage and breaking new ground in audience reach.”
The Switch utilized three dedicated transmit paths between Europe and North America, one created specifically for the tournament, and installed new hardware onsite at Stade Roland Garros.
Net Insight played a vital role in the French Open deployment, providing the primary backbone for The Switch’s network through the installation of several Nimbra nodes for the transport of high-performance feeds between Paris and LA.
Castaneda added that “the close collaboration between The Switch and Net Insight ensured that the project was delivered effortlessly and efficiently. The hardware was easy to configure and quick to set up by our engineering teams, who are really familiar with this best-in-class equipment. The use of Nimbra significantly reduced the cost and complexity of the installation and ensured we were able to be operational within three days.”
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George Winslow is the senior content producer for TV Tech. He has written about the television, media and technology industries for nearly 30 years for such publications as Broadcasting & Cable, Multichannel News and TV Tech. Over the years, he has edited a number of magazines, including Multichannel News International and World Screen, and moderated panels at such major industry events as NAB and MIP TV. He has published two books and dozens of encyclopedia articles on such subjects as the media, New York City history and economics.