An F1 racing car displayed on a Sky Glass TV.
Technology

The Thrill of Formula 1 Races Through Comcast’s Global Technology Platform

The Thrill of Formula 1 Races Through Comcast’s Global Technology Platform

The start of the 2022 Formula 1 season ushered in a new era for fans – from reengineered cars to rule changes that could transform the sport. But for Sky Sports, F1’s opening race marked another first: an entire F1 season that is available to viewers in ultra-high-definition, part of Sky’s broader ambition to make HDR TV viewing its new sports standard.

In August of last year, Sky Sports took a huge step forward in making its Premier League coverage available in HDR, and the start of the F1 season signals another significant move toward that goal. There are few sports more technically demanding than Formula 1 – both inside the car and on screen, requiring every last frame to keep up with speeds that can reach as high as 248 mph.

For Sky, the green flag on the F1 season represents an opportunity to rev this stunning live content through Sky Glass, the new streaming TV released in the UK last year and launching in Sky’s other European markets in 2022. Formula 1 is tailormade to showcase the turbocharged Sky Glass engine powered by Comcast’s global technology platform.

“We are in the experience business,” said Comcast Global Chief Product Officer Fraser Stirling at the Sky Glass launch event in October. “We know how hugely popular live TV is to people. It stands to reason that we’ve created a sound and picture experience built on all on the technical excellence you’d expect from Comcast and Sky.”


Comcast Global Chief Product Officer Fraser Stirling demonstrates audio and visual features of Sky Glass at the product's launch event in October, 2021.

Sky Glass foundationally shares the same systems as other products across Comcast’s global tech platform including voice search, discovery, apps and interactive features. Its 10-bit HDR screen supports HLG, HDR10 and Dolby Vision®, over a billion colors to optimize F1’s rightful chroma.

What makes Sky Glass equally unique – especially as a platform to air live F1 – is its edge-to-edge, six-speaker Dolby Atmos® sound and built-in sub-woofer. It’s perfect for capturing the ear-splitting whirl of F1 engines as they accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 2.3 seconds.

The launch of Glass comes at a time when the popularity of Premier League and F1 have skyrocketed both in Europe and the U.S., a frenzy that has only intensified as fans across the world are once again enjoying the in-person experience of live sports. Sky Glass grew from concept to reality during the height of the pandemic. As live sports went silent, Comcast’s global research and development teams were putting the finishing touches on Glass with the goal of creating an IRL viewing experience for fans from their living rooms.

For Sky’s audience, surrounding the Premier League and F1 in immersive sound was an obvious must.

“We want to make sure the experience of live sport is absolutely spot-on and the best in the world, and sound has got a huge part to play in that,” Fraser said.

Our amazing team spans the globe. They spent literally weeks in their audio labs through lockdown listening to the kicks of footballs, roars of crowds and the screaming of F1 cars.
Fraser Stirling
Comcast Global Chief Product Officer

Sky Sports is the exclusive home of live F1 in the UK and Ireland. Customers simply need to say "Hello Sky, Formula 1" to Sky Glass or into their Sky Q voice remote to find all the latest live races, news and analysis from Sky Sports F1. The season runs until Nov. 20.