The BBC is planning to air more than 300 live hours of coverage of the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing. The opening ceremony is set to air on February 4, 2022.
The BBC’s live coverage will be spread across BBC One, BBC Two, BBC iPlayer and the BBC Sport website, with additional daily coverage and updates on BBC Three and BBC Radio 5 Live.
A virtual-reality studio, based at Media City UK, will provide a ski lodge setting to bring viewers their favourite events, must-see moments and live reports from the host city.
As with the Tokyo Olympics last summer, the BBC is sub-licensing its Olympics content from Discovery, where the lion’s share of broadcasts will air, on Eurosport Player and Discovery+.
In the summer, some have argued that the free-to-air Olympics coverage on the BBC was insufficient, in comparison to the paid streams on Discvoery+.
As for picture quality, this time around it seems there will be no Ultra HD (4K) coverage of the Winter Olympics on the BBC. Past live sporting events, like the UEFA Euro 2020 were streamed in 4K on the BBC.
This year, even on Discovery+, the Olympics coverage will NOT be in 4K. Only the 4K Eurosport Channel on pay-TV platforms will have Ultra HD content.
Barbara Slater, Director of BBC Sport, had this to say about the upcoming Winter Olympics coverage:
“We are delighted to bring audiences the very best action and medal moments from Beijing.
Our expert line-up of international winter sport stars, combined with our round-the-clock coverage, will ensure that the Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games take pride of place in an already mouth-watering sporting year.”
Winter Olympic Games on the BBC: TV Highlights
The 2022 Winter Olympics are taking place in Beijing, between February 4 and February 20. Due to the time differences with the UK, most of the major events will take place late at night or in our early morning hours.
Britain’s greatest Winter Olympian, Lizzy Yarnold, is joining the BBC’s team, which will be led by Hazel Irvine, Jeanette Kwakye, Ayo Akinwolere and JJ Chalmers.
Clare Balding will bring viewers a daily highlights show on BBC Two, and Aimee Fuller will present BBC Three ‘Extra’ – a daily one-hour show with extended highlights, on the newly-reboot linear version of BBC Three (which will have launched by then).
Daily coverage will begin on BBC One from midnight until 6am (UK time) as Ayo Akinwolere presents the overnight action.
Welcoming viewers from 6am until 9am on BBC Two, Jeanette Kwakye will take over to bring the latest live events from the slopes and arenas.
From 9.15am-12pm on BBC One Hazel Irvine leads the coverage, before JJ Chalmers takes over at 3 pm on BBC Two to show extended replays of the action.
Clare Balding will present Today At The Games every night on BBC Two at 7 pm to bring the best of the day’s action, before coverage switches to BBC Three at 8 pm, where Aimee Fuller presents extended highlights from some of the day’s most exciting events.
A second live stream will be available on BBC iPlayer, Red Button and the BBC Sport website, to bring even more unmissable moments and complete the round-the-clock offering.
Viewers watching live programmes on BBC iPlayer can make use of the live restart function to watch events from the beginning.
BBC’s Beijing TV Line-up:
Commentator: Matt Chilton
Experts: Graham Bell and Chemmy Alcott
Commentators: Steve Cram, Rhona Howie, Jackie Lockhart and Logan Gray
Commentators: Katherine Downes and Robin Cousins
Experts: Jayne Torvill, Christopher Dean, David King
Biathlon/Cross-Country Skiing/Nordic Combined/Ski Jumping
Commentators: Rob Walker and Ollie Williams
Commentators: Simon Brotherton and Wilf O’Reilly
Experts: Sarah Lindsay
Commentators: John Hunt and John Jackson
Experts: Lizzy Yarnold, Shelley Rudman, Nicola Minichiello
Snowboarding and Freestyle Skiing
Commentators: Ed Leigh and Tim Warwood
Experts: Aimee Fuller, Zoe Gillings, Ed Drake