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BBC iPlayer to show Wimbledon finals in Ultra HD

Friday, June 22nd 2018 by Phil Wilkinson-Jones

The BBC is to show Centre Court matches from this year’s Wimbledon in Ultra HD on the iPlayer as part of an extended trial of its 4K capabilities.

The semi-finals and finals of the tournament will also be available to watch in Ultra HD for Sky customers with the 2TB Sky Q set top box.

iPlayer is already showing World Cup matches in Ultra HD and High Dynamic Range (HDR) as the BBC works towards being able to stream major live events freely in the highest possible quality.

As with the World Cup games, the Beeb’s Ultra HD tennis coverage will be available to a limited number of viewers – tens of thousands of people, the broadcaster says, on a first-come, first-served basis.

Coverage from the All England Club starts on 2 July and in order to watch in 4K you’ll need a compatible TV and a broadband connection of at least 20Mbps. A full list of compatible devices is available on the iPlayer website.

As well as testing out its 4K broadcast technology, the BBC will also be giving viewers the choice of up to 16 HD streams at any one time, so you can choose the action you want to follow be it the men’s, women’s, doubles, wheelchair tennis or the boys and girls competitions.

'All the key action'

Barbara Slater, director of BBC Sport, says: “We can’t wait to bring the most prestigious tennis event to the widest possible audience through our market-leading TV, radio and digital services.

“Tennis fans will have all the key action covered wherever and whenever they want it thanks to our new live streaming service providing comprehensive coverage from up to 15 courts.”

Ultra HD Wimbledon coverage will be available to even more fans as the tournament reaches its latter stages, as those with the 2TB, Ultra HD-compatible Sky Q box will be able to watch the semi-finals and finals in 4K. They’ll just need to press the red button while watching BBC One or Two.

Sky is also showing England’s ODI and T20 international cricket matches against Australia and India in Ultra HD, as well as the Test series against India, the second half of this season’s Formula 1 calendar and the Premier League when it returns in August.

Jon Simkin, director of channels and operations at Sky, said: “Offering the BBC’s coverage of the Wimbledon semi-finals and final in Ultra HD is another major addition to our Ultra HD sports offering this summer.

“Sky Q customers can get even closer to the drama and excitement of the final rounds of the world’s oldest tennis tournament from the comfort of their own living rooms.”

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