Livestream’s Live@Wimbledon Serves Up Tennis Coverage to the Web
Wimbledon is well under way, and, for the first time ever, fans finding themselves away from a television set during a key match are no longer out of luck. Earlier this year, Livestream and The Championships Wimbledon formed a partnership to create Live@Wimbledon, an interactive experience featuring live video, real-time chat, photos, social media, and text updates.
In addition to providing its proprietary Shuttle encoder and Livestream for Producers encoding software, Livestream serves as the content-delivery network, video player, and service platform for Live@Wimbledon.
The adaptive-bitrate video player, supported by Akamai HDNet, can be accessed through Wimbledon.com and the company’s Website on any Web-enabled device. Depending on user Internet connection, Live@Wimbledon can be streamed in full 720p HD.
“The player has the ability to do DVR, so, if you arrive to the stream late, you can rewind it, and it’ll go back live,” says Jessica Kantor, head of content and marketing for Livestream. “It’s also chromeless: [the video feed] goes from the encoder into our encoding software and then out straight to our video player. It’s something that any-level sporting event could do.”
Throughout Wimbledon, Livestream is broadcasting live video content for up to five hours a day — more than 65 hours of live programming total — including portions of key matches, player interviews, press conferences, score updates, “off-court” reports, and behind-the-scenes access.
“We’re making it really easy and free for fans to view what’s happening at Wimbledon,” says Kantor. “[Live@Wimbledon] is really bringing fans into Wimbledon in a way they haven’t had a chance before: there’s a lot of backstage coverage; there’s a lot of seeing what the cultures and traditions are, as well as the actual match play.”
Additionally, the stream encourages fan interaction and combines a studio presentation with on-site reporters. IMG is on-site at Wimbledon to provide technical services for the stream, which includes reports from Matts Wilander and Annabel Croft from a studio atop the broadcast center.
“We are thrilled to be partnering with Wimbledon, tennis’s best-known and most prestigious tournament, to live-stream the matches that everyone wants to see,” says Max Haot, co-founder/CEO of Livestream. “For tennis fans who cannot attend the matches in person, Live@Wimbledon offers them a chance to feel part of the action with our HD-quality video and interactive features.”
Live@Wimbledon is available in the U.S., UK, and the Americas, with the exception of Brazil.