Sports News Television (SNTV), a
joint-venture between Associated Press (AP) and IMG Worldwide, has launched its
high definition (HD) sports news service.
The launch will help AP capitalize
on year of major sporting events, including the London Olympics, and is part of
a massive upgrade of the AP's facilities and operations to HD, which will see
all news content available in HD by the second quarter of 2012.
SNTV managing director Martin Kay
noted in a statement that "we are very excited to be the first sports news
agency to offer high definition in time for a huge year in sport. We start with
the Australian Open, then the African Cup of Nations, Euro 2012, the London
Olympics, the Ryder Cup and the T20 Cricket World Cup. This is in addition to
our ongoing coverage of football, tennis, golf, U.S. sports and more - it's set
to be a glorious year for sport in HD."
The move to HD, which began last
year, is also part of a much bigger transformation of AP's video business that
is designed to change the way the news agency gathers, produces and distributes
news to its customers.
As part of that effort, it has
deployed more than 200 HD cameras, upgraded mobile satellite trucks and
enhanced backhaul capabilities to handle the HD signal.
In London, a new HD production
system will be installed that will allow journalist to create HD content at
Video news bureaus around the globe
have also been upgraded to the latest generation of video editing, compression
and transmission technologies. High-def master control rooms are being
constructed in more than 20 locations including London, New York and
Finally, the AP's extensive video
archive is also being upgraded so that customers able to download broadcast
quality and HD footage from its Website.