|Article by Matthias Pätzold|
Fox Sports announced that it conducted—in cooperation with the Fox Innovation Lab and partners Ericsson, Intel, and AT&T—the first test of 5G technology, streaming 4K video over 5G for broadcast in the United States at the 2018 U.S. Open on 14–17 June. The groundbreaking trial was the first available broadcast footage enabled using 5G technology from a premier U.S. golf event.
Fox Sports took advantage of this true 5G live test environment for 4K images and streaming of U.S. Open video to multiple platforms. This trial showcased a powerful use case for reducing live production costs, while enabling ultrahigh-definition broadcasting to scale.
Ericsson contributed to the trial by providing the 5G radios, baseband, simulated network core, and 4K video encoder and decoder. Intel provided the Intel 5G Mobile Trial Platform, a compact device capable of transmitting 1.6 Gb/s that allows fast field and interoperability testing of 5G networks and equipment.
AT&T used millimeter-wave (mm-wave) spectrum to deliver the 5G connection. AT&T also plans to be the first U.S. carrier to launch standards-based, mobile 5G services to customers in a dozen cities, including parts of Dallas; Atlanta, Georgia; and Waco, Texas.
The 5G wireless technology transmitted 4K high-dynamic-range images from two Fox Sports cameras through the Fox Sports production truck, making it available to Fox Sports and its viewers through DirecTV. In the future, 5G could possibly be used to deliver real-time VR views from the course to viewers.
Deployed for the first time on a broad scale earlier this year by Intel and partners at the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in PyeongChang, South Korea, the 5G technology demonstrated the potential to provide disruptive innovations for broadcasters and consumers alike. The new wireless technology enables multigigabit transmission rates with ultralow latency.
Far beyond being just another G after the wireless generations of 3G and 4G, 5G represents a revolution in how sports and media are distributed and consumed. It provides entirely new ways for users to engage with an event.