In an industry “first”, Sony, Univision Deportes and NeuLion managed to stream a live soccer match exclusively to Sony’s newer 4K UHD TVs on Thursday March 17th.
According to a very recent press release from Sony, the company announced that it had participated in a very successful streaming trial for live consumer audiences of a 4K sports event as it happened in stunning 4K resolution, making the effort “the first live North American soccer broadcast in 4K by Univision Deportes”. Univision and NeuLion are Sony’s main collaborative partners in the new live ultra HD entertainment effort they produced.
This event and others like it were streamed live by leveraging NeuLion’s Digital Platform technology and were delivered through OTT (over-the-top) channels to Sony 4K HDR Ultra HD TVs that are integrated with the NeuLion 4K streaming SDK. The live sportscasts of the Univision Deportes soccer matches were then made viewable to audiences at select locations in Florida, New York and California. This is just the first of many such trials to come according to Sony and we can look forward to seeing or at least hearing of more future broadcasts throughout the summer of 2016.
According to Sunil Nayyar, Director of Product Marketing, TV and Projectors for Sony North America, “Sony 4K HDR Ultra HD TVs are the logical choice for these 4K events because with our experience in 4K HDR shooting, editing, recording, storage, playback, and transmission, we understand 4K display technology like no other company.”
Nayyar also explained that, “These 4K live streaming tests reveal that the streaming and broadcast of live 4K sports is on its way to consumers in the near future. And Sony’s line-up of 4K HDR Ultra HD TVs are ready today.”
As for Univision Deportes, it’s the multimedia sports division of Univision Communications Inc. and is considered to be a leading North American Spanish-language sports network for live sportscasts, commentary and other sports news. The company also produced the first live North American soccer event in 4K during a low-pressure match between Mexico’s National Team and the African state of Senegal, which happened at Marlins Park in Miami, Florida earlier in 2016, on February 10th.
This particular earlier event was also streamed live exclusively to Sony 4K HDR TVs that had the NeuLion SDK installed in them.
NeuLion itself is also a major player in the technology service industry, with a particular specialty in OTT distribution of both live and on-demand video entertainment through IP-enabled devices. In the case of the Univision 4K broadcasts, NeuLion also partnered up with NEP, a major worldwide provider of remote television services for distribution of the Univision 4K live stream.
According to the senior Vice Presitent of Strategy and Operations for Univision Deportes, Olek Loewenstein, “”Soccer matches are won and lost with lots of detail on the field of play, and with 4K, the fans are closer than ever to the insider experience. The popularity of our Univision Deportes App reveals that our fans are eager for more sports and we are the leader in the soccer fan experience. With the proliferation of 4K-capable devices and content, we are excited to take this first step to deliver a soccer match in 4K with NeuLion and Sony.”
And of course, Univision is planning many more live 4K events later in 2016. These include the final of the Copa America Centerio and other events. Both Univision and NeuLion are expected to deliver these down-the-road 4K services through TV’s like the new Sony 4K UHD HDR models on sale today.