NBC Olympics taps Cisco IP technology

The Olympics officially kick off Friday evening and Cisco’s IP
video infrastructure will enable NBC personnel in
New York
Los Angeles to edit video as it is captured
Beijing and
deliver it to three screens including TV, PC and smartphone.

The trans-ocean network powered by Cisco will enable the
transfer of gigabyte-sized files between
New York and
Los Angeles. In previous Olympics, NBC staff
had to work from videotapes to add graphics and captions to event shots. NBC will present more
than 3,600 hours of broadcast coverage during the 17-day event. It would be
impossible to use a tape library to replicate enough video copies for use at
eight different networks as well as NBCOlympics.com. Using a file-based
workflow for shot selection, the network can select shots and distribute them
to affiliates even before an event is finished.

“With the Cisco network solution, we’ve achieved the Holy Grail of
digital video, which is the ability to perform shot selections on
low-resolution files and extract high-resolution material from those files even
as they are being recorded. That is a huge accomplishment,” said Craig
Lau, vice president for Information Technology, NBC Olympics. “Cisco is a
trusted partner, and in the demanding IT environment of the Olympic Games, we
depend on trusted relationships. We have absolute deadlines for when Olympics
coverage begins and ends. Cisco technologies help us exceed expectations and
meet our timetables in an unforgiving environment.”

Viewers of NBC’s coverage of the Beijing Olympic Games will be able to use
their PCs and laptops to access 2,200 hours of video that they can play back on
demand, as well as 3,000 hours of highlights, rewinds, encores and scoring
results. Individuals will also be able to watch video and view results on their

“We are making broadcast history, executing the creation, management
and distribution of digital video in a way that’s never been achieved
before,” said Tony Bates, senior vice president and general manager, Cisco
Service Provider Group. “We are entering the visual-networking era where
video changes everything, especially the way people connect with the Olympic
Games. The Olympics is all about the experience. The next best thing to being
Beijing is
to be able to see the event coverage. This year, not only are thousands of
hours of Olympic coverage being transmitted in real time, but Cisco’s IP video
network and encoding technologies are also giving people the ability to access
hundreds of event videos on demand using their PCs, laptops and mobile devices
for an unprecedented Olympic experience anywhere, anyplace, anytime.”

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