VideoSport Broadcast Review (Part 2)

Well, for the past few days I’ve been catching a glimpse of our Handball TV future. And I’m happy to report that the future looks good.

A little background story to highlight why I think it looks good: For many years, at least prior to living in Europe, I made a yearly pilgrimage to Las Vegas for the first long weekend of the NCAA Basketball Tournament. For Euro readers a short explanation: the NCCA basketball tournament is a 64 team single elimination tournament which captivates the American Sports public for 3 consecutive weekends in March every year. Much like the national cup tournaments it gives the underdog a chance to take on the big heavyweights and pull off the big upset. Watching the games in Vegas had many benefits: 1) $1 beers, 2) betting on the games and 3) I could watch 4 games simultaneously. For the purposes of this article I’ll focus on #3. How many times have you been at home and seen a score and said, “What the hell!? Holy Cross is beating Kansas! Why don‘t they switch to that game?” Well in Vegas, I wasn’t forced to follow the whim of the network, every game was available.

Last Saturday, courtesy of VideoSport, it was just like being in Vegas, except the beer was a little bit more expensive. With my regular TV broadcasting the France-Ukraine match, I used my laptop to watch the Spain-Egypt match at the same time. But then I noticed that South Korea was giving Russia all they could handle, so I started flipping back and forth between the two games on my laptop. As it became apparent that the France-Ukraine match wasn’t going to be very interesting, I found myself wishing that I could put one of the good matches on my TV. Then the light bulb turned on. “Hey, I wondered, could I watch one game on my laptop and another on my desktop computer?” Needless to say the experiment worked. Whereas a year ago I would have been stuck watching a boring blowout, I was now watching two good games at the same time.

But, before we all get too excited, I need to highlight that this is still a glimpse of what will be. At times, my internet connection at home couldn’t keep up with the data stream causing the frustrating “buffering xx%” message to keep periodically recycling at critical moments. Even worse on Sunday, I could only get the audio to work and tech support at VideoSport only response was “Sorry, it must be your internet connection.” (note: It was actually a problem with Internet Explorer, and I switched to Netscape and I’m having no problems now.)

In fact, I’m now probably doing the ultimate in multi-watching here in Dortmund. Where else can I watch a sold out match live and in person, while keeping an eye on Czech Republic – Russia. may be small time in relation to most news outlets, but there were more than a few journalists peaking at my laptop.