Live 8K broadcasts over 5G at French Open tennis

The Fédération Française de Tennis (FFT), France Télévisions and Orange have joined forces to offer the first ever live 8K broadcast on 5G networks of matches from the 2019 French Open tennis at Roland-Garros. The 8K market is forecast to be worth USD 26.8 billion by 2024.

Live 8K broadcasts over 5G at French Open tennis
Live 8K broadcasts over 5G at French Open tennis

Throughout the two-week-long tournament, spectators were able to enjoy 8K live sports broadcasts on next-generation televisions installed in two specially dedicated showrooms. The broadcasts were made possible thanks to 8K-enabled TV screens and the deployment of 5G Broadcast networks.

This service represents a world-first for an international sporting competition. France Télévisions configured a complete testing platform for the future of television. This included 8K cameras installed on the Philippe-Chatrier Court, which were linked to a platform of services ranging from live video encoding, to the management of catch-up TV and VOD services for recorded matches. The platform was connected to Orange 5G transmitters, which were deployed in multiple locations throughout the Roland-Garros stadium. The services were available on fixed and mobile viewing devices, leveraging Oppo’s 5G technologies. They will also be shown on 8K televisions screens, using 8K-compatible hardware and software.

8K market growth

The 8K technology market is projected to grow from USD 2.9 billion in 2019 to USD 26.8 billion by 2024 growing at a a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 55.5%, according to research group MarketsandMarkets.

Advancements in display technology, financial assistance by governments, and expansion of production capabilities for 8K UHD display panels; availability of various products for the creation and delivery of 8K content; and increased demand for larger-sized TVs with higher resolution are a few major factors driving the 8K technology market growth.

The 8K technology market has been segmented on the basis of products into 4 categories: televisions, projectors, professional cameras, and monitors and notebooks. Among these products, television is expected to be the fastest-growing segment in the overall 8K technology market.

Consumers are showing interest in large-screen TVs with better picture quality as they want theatre-like experience at home. Hence, the market for 8K TVs is likely to witness significant growth in the coming years. Enhanced picture quality and image depth, more vibrant and brighter colours, bigger screen, and high demand for smart TVs owing to their capability to allow users to install apps and pull content digitally from anywhere are among a few major factors that attract customers toward products based on this technology. However, owing to the limited content availability and high cost, 8K televisions are not offering significant value addition to early buyers compared to 4K televisions.

Consumers lead 8K growth

The consumers segment is expected to hold the largest market share during the forecast period. The 8K resolution has a variety of applications for consumers. It can be used in TVs, cameras, projectors, and so on. Increasing demand for large-sized televisions by consumers for enhanced picture quality and image depth is the major factor driving the growth of the 8K technology market. Additionally, the sports & entertainment Industry is expected to hold the second-largest share of the 8K technology market.

North America market

North America held the largest share of the market in 2018. It is one of the leading regions and is expected to witness high growth in the 8K technology market in the coming years. North American companies are focusing on entering into partnership agreements to develop 8K products with collaborative efforts, as well as on increasing their expenditure in R&D, keeping in mind the potential of new technology. The US is the leading country in North America with high demand for 8K products including TVs, cameras, projectors, and monitors. Increasing demand for large-sized TVs with high resolution drives the 8K technology market growth in the country.

How is Rohde & Schwarz handling 4K, UHD and the 8K future?

R&S VENICE-S

R&S VENICE-S server system supports various communications protocols such as VDCP (serial and TCP/IP), FIMS, MOS and more, allowing its integration into any media value chain. It minimizes the need for transcoding by supporting a variety of software-based codecs. Also supported are one UHD p60 channel (bidirectional) and four HD p60 channels (bidirectional). R&S VENIC-S also handles HDR material with ease.

R&S CLIPSTER

The R&S CLIPSTER is a complete mastering solution capable of generating IMF packages, digital cinema packages (DCP) and AS11 and AS02 packages. Supporting real-time processing of images up to 4K 120p as well as a wide variety of media file formats, the R&S CLIPSTER provides post houses with a tool that provides DCI and IMF mastering, colour format conversion to SDR and HDR and comprehensive codec support.

Posted by Chris Dickinson, technology journalist and editor of the Always On blog. June 11, 2019.

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