BBC: “The biggest broadcasting event in our 90 year history”

A blog post from the BBC Direc­tor Gen­eral Mark Thomp­son has paid trib­ute to the Olympian efforts of every­one at the BBC who deliv­ered what he calls “the biggest broad­cast­ing event in our 90 year his­tory” refer­ring of course to the 2012 Lon­don Games.

BBCThe open­ing cer­e­mony entered the record books as the most-watched pro­grams in the his­tory of the BBC, and fig­ures across all 24 chan­nels of sport were aston­ish­ingly high.

While the top ten events took most of the inter­net feeds, 50 per­cent of con­sump­tion was for ‘less pop­u­lar’ events, val­i­dat­ing the BBC’s deci­sion to have all sports, all the time, with rewind and catch-up capa­bil­i­ties.

There was also clear evi­dence of view­ers tak­ing the Olympics with them through­out the day. Look­ing at how peo­ple were access­ing the BBC cov­er­age online, PC usage peaked at lunchtime, mobile peaked after work around 6pm and tablet use was high­est around 9pm. These truly were the world’s first dig­i­tal games.

More inter­est­ing details pointed out by the BBC include:

- The Open­ing Cer­e­mony drew a peak broad­cast audi­ence of 27.1 mil­lion peo­ple (includ­ing the red but­ton), of which 9.2 mil­lion were via the mobile site and 2.3 mil­lion on tablets
— On the busiest day, the BBC deliv­ered 2.8 petabytes, with the peak traf­fic moment occur­ring when Bradley Wig­gins won Gold and it shifted 700 Gb/s
— Chap­ter mark­ing enabled audi­ences to go back to key event moments instantly – receiv­ing an aver­age 1.5 mil­lion clicks per day – 13,000 clicks alone for Bolt’s 100m Final win
— The first week of the games was the most pop­u­lar ever for BBC Sport Online with a total of 34.7 mil­lion browsers 50 mil­lion requests for the BBC Sport’s live video inter­ac­tive streams and more than 106 mil­lion requests for BBC Olympic video con­tent across all online plat­form
— BBC Sport Online’s most requested live video stream was of the Ten­nis Sin­gles Finals, where Andy Mur­ray and Ser­ena Williams were vic­to­ri­ous.

Chang­ing the world through dig­i­tal expe­ri­ences requires a shared vision. By work­ing with the BBC, an orga­ni­za­tion with a man­date to push tech­nol­ogy bound­ariesand intro­duce inno­v­a­tive new ser­vices to its view­ers, Adobe and all the broad­cast part­ners have deliv­ered an incred­i­ble feat of broad­cast engi­neer­ing both online and on devices.

As a pub­licly funded ser­vice, the BBC has deliv­ered tremen­dous value to UK cit­i­zens, not only via tra­di­tional broad­cast, but also through the deliv­ery of the games online and across devices. Adobe, through ele­ments of Adobe’s Project Prime­time, is extremely proud of the role it played in help­ing the BBC deliver its out­stand­ing Olympics cov­er­age and of the deep part­ner­ships formed with the BBC’s Future Media team.

Some nice user com­ments we’ve seen:

I think that I just got a life­times value from my license fee in 2 weeks!! — Mike Thom­sett

I’ve always thought the License Fee was worth pay­ing; now I think that more than ever. The BBC isa credit to Britain and sets the stan­dard to which broad­cast­ers around the world aspire...Thank you BBC, I have fal­len in love with you again — Andrew McNeil

We would like to con­grat­u­late the BBC and its lead­er­ship for the vision, col­lab­o­ra­tion, pas­sion and drive that has set a new bar for broad­cast, extend­ing far beyond what we know today as “tele­vi­sion”. Lon­don 2012 has set the stage for every broad­caster around the world to bring TV con­tent and new dig­i­tal expe­ri­ences online.

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Steve Allison

About Steve Allison

As a senior manager, evangelism for Adobe Primetime in the EMEA/ASIA-PAC regions, Steve focuses on an end-to-end video solution across Adobe's full technology stack. He has spent many years working with customers to deliver high quality, monetisable video services - VOD, linear and live content. Working with broadcasters such as the BBC, RTL and NHK, Steve enables broadcasters and OTT companies to develop next generation video and ad monetisation strategies.

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