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Olympic coverage on your mobile


2 August, 2005: European sports fans can shut your TV sets but watch the Beijing summer Olympics through mobile phones in 2008.

The European Broadcasting Union, a consortium of broadcasters, which has held right for all olympics since 1960, has started inviting bids for the 2006 winter Olympics in Turin as well as the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

The British Broadcasting Corporation is also a member of the European Broadcasting Union.

Bidder should submit tenders before September 9 to bag license for broadcasting images of Olympics. The images would be delivered through live-on demand packages to cell phones.

The rights can be bought as single countries or as a group of countries in Eurovision region. About 54 territories in Europe, North Africa and Middle East come under the Eurovision region.

The move is seen as a bid to cash in on the record audiences during the Athens Olympics. Audiences watched an average 14 hour of television footage during the 17-day period when the Olympics was held, as per available data.

The Athens Olympics was also a pointer to the huge demand for accessing coverage via the internet and interactive TV.

More than 60 lakh viewers came to the BBCs interactive coverage of the Athens games during the first five days itself. Of this, 3/4th of them stayed with BBCs interactive service for more than 180 seconds. And about 60 per cent chose to cling on to it even 15 minutes later.

It may be recalled that the European Broadcasting Union has bagged the rights for the winter Olympics to be held in Vancouver and the 2012 London Olympics. The deal is worth 427 million pounds.

The NBC bagged the rights for the event in the US, with a record 1.24 billion pound deal.




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