Orange, France Télévisions Expand 3D Coverage of French Open

The French Open gets under way at Stade Roland Garros in Paris on Sunday May 23, with television coverage in both HD and 3D. Orange and France Télévisions’ stereoscopic transmissions for the 2009 tournament were recognised by SVG with an Award for Technical Achievement, and, this year, the companies have built on that to extend the scope of the technology.

Last year’s 3D broadcasts were available only at cinemas in Paris, Madrid, Barcelona, and Valencia, five Orange stores in France, and the Roland Garros stadium. Subscribers to Orange’s broadband and fibre-optic services will be able to see the 2010 tournament in 3D in their own homes — if they have the right TV set and glasses.

Orange is transmitting a dedicated 3D channel, in collaboration with host broadcaster France Télévisions, which will carry selected stereoscopic matches from May 26 to June 6.

In April, Orange signed an agreement with the French Tennis Federation (FFT) to broadcast the French Open from 2010 to ’13, with host feeds coming from France Télévisions. As part of the deal, the Orange Sport channel will carry matches played on the Philippe Chatrier and Suzanne Lenglen courts (the equivalents of Wimbledon’s Centre Court and Number 1 Court) in HD, under a licensing agreement with France Télévisions.

While France Télévisions remains the official broadcaster for Roland Garros, Orange is now the new-media and official mobile broadcaster. In that capacity, Orange will continue to run the Tennis Everywhere service for television, the Web, and mobile phones.

Orange TV will have seven channels of live coverage, plus interactive features, all produced by France Télévisions. There are five channels for mobile platforms, featuring live matches, video on demand, results, updates, and all the necessary facts and figures. The Website will feature broadband streaming of games on the seven main courts, plus VOD.

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