Olympics logo
The BBC is boosting its high-definition TV service for the duration of the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing

The BBC is preparing for the opening of the Olympics on Friday and will extend the regular transmission times on its high-definition channel to broadcast around 300 hours of HD coverage of the games.

Viewers with HD-ready or Full HD TVs will be able to see all the HD broadcasts on Sky HD, Virgin Media's V+ service and Freesat.

Emma Scott, managing director of Freesat, says: "The Olympics is the ultimate global sporting event, and viewers will be astounded by the quality of the BBC's HD coverage; every drop of water falling off the oars of a rower, to the sand erupting from the long jump pit, will be beautifully clear."

Whether the Beeb's HD coverage will be enough to remove the smog surrounding the "bird's nest" Olympic stadium is another matter. Watching the Ten O'Clock News last night, even the finest HD TV would have failed to remove the gloom surrounding the stadium.

More after the break

Huw Edwards waxed lyrical about how glorious it all looked in bright sunshine the previous day, but China still seems to be struggling to control pollution levels in Beijing. No amount of high-def trickery will gloss over that.

Coverage of the opening ceremony starts at 1pm on Friday, August 8th on BBC One, Freeview, cable and satellite. For full listings, check out the BBC Sport website.