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September 8, 2016updated 21 Oct 2016 4:08pm

Football on TV gets 3D augmented reality

BT Sport takes graphics battle to the floor with new AR system

By Sam

Ericsson has signed BT Sport as its first client for PIERO Augmented Reality, a software system that creates immersive viewing experiences.

PIERO Augmented Reality, launched in April, allows broadcasters to overlay 3D graphics in real-time during live studio productions and sports games.

Sports analysis graphics can be produced instantly either by a system operator or by a presenter using a tablet device.

The graphics are projected onto the studio floor in 3D allowing broadcasters to illustrate the analysis sequence without cutting away from the studio environment.

The technology integrates with major studio tracking systems and popular sports data service providers.

BT Sport will use Ericsson's PIERO sports graphics software for rugby.

Jamie Hindhaugh, COO BT Sport, said "We're always looking to enhance and improve the quality of our coverage and presentation and are excited to be working with Ericsson and to be the first to use PIERO Augmented Reality, we think this brand new technology will enhance our coverage and analysis and ultimately the viewer experience."

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Thorsten Sauer, Head of Broadcast and Media Services, Ericsson, says: "This industry first, immersive technology allows broadcasters to elevate sports programming by going beyond rudimentary, pre-built 2D graphics and bring content to life through data-driven stories for even more compelling viewing and deeper engagement. BT Sport is a long-time partner and as the first client for PIERO Augmented Reality we deepen the relationship, delivering value to BT Sport's viewers."

PIERO is used by over 50 broadcasters around the world.

Separately Ericsson announced a partnership with google extend the reach of the Ericsson cloud-based MediaFirst TV Platform into the Android TV ecosystem, Google's operating system for the set-top-box.

Ericsson MediaFirst is a software-defined, media-optimized end-to-end portfolio suite for the creation, preparation, management and delivery of next generation pay-TV to any screen with an immersive TV viewing experience..

The integration of Ericsson MediaFirst TV Platform with Android TV will provide an additional pathway to extend MediaFirst cloud-based TV services, including 4K-UHD live TV channels, video-on-demand, catch-up TV and cloud DVR to an even wider subscriber base.

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