Welho, the largest cable operator in Finland, successfully distributed the French Open tennis tournament in live 3-D to its network from May 23 and June 6. The demo 3-D live tennis broadcast could be seen in the Welho Store, in Helsinki, and at three Welho retailers.
The 3-D broadcast was shown in HD mode using 1080i side-by-side technology and displayed on Panasonic 50in 3-D plasma televisions. Viewers had to wear active shutter glasses. The television sets are available at retailers, although few consumers are buying.
All games played at the French Open's main arena Philippe Chatrier were shot with Panasonic 3-D cameras and broadcast live via satellite by Eurosport. Welho downlinked the signal at its headend and retransmits it to its cable network, just like any other digital TV channel.
Welho plans to launch regular 3-D broadcasts on its cable network as soon as commercially attractive content is available. This year, Welho will also broadcast selected sports events in 3-D.