Formula One Management (FOM) has officially rubberstamped the sport being broadcast in true High Definition format for the first time.
Rumours of a global go-ahead were sparked after Sky Deutschland confirmed it would broadcast all 2011 season races in high definition format, and networks such as Tv Globo in Brazil have been quick to follow suit with similar announcements.
The good news is that FOM has now confirmed that all channels worldwide that have a contract to broadcast the races will be given the HD feed.
FOM has been conducting a thorough investigation in the off-season as to whether such a service would be viable and practical, and it has significantly invested in upgrading and testing its equipment to be ready ahead of the season opener at Bahrain in mid-March.
The equipment will be able to download data to all broadcasters at a rate of 42MB per second and in 1080i resolution.
All trackside cameras will be high-definition, but the current technical complexities of the onboard cameras will mean that these will continue to remain broadcast in an upscaled Standard Definition format until further notice.
It is believed that the BBC will almost certainly opt to broadcast its telecast in High Definition on its HD channel, and offer a downscaled version for its terrestrial feeds, although the network is yet to publicly confirm this.
We have contacted Australia’s F1 broadcaster, OneHD, for comment.
[Original image via LAT]