Silverlight's Olympic Return: NBCU Re-Ups With Microsoft For 2010

imageMajor League Baseball’s digital unit may have dropped Microsoft’s Silverlight as its online video platform, but Silverlight apparently works just fine for NBC Universal (NYSE: GE). NBCU has reupped with Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT) for the 2010 Vancouver Games.

The two companies will run “NBCOlympics.com on MSN” again, complete with live and on-demand event coverage in both standard and HD, packaged clips and interviews, stats and athlete bios. Olympics content will also be syndicated across the MSN Network, including on MSN.com and MSN Video. Silverlight was the online video platform for NBCU’s coverage of the Beijing Olympics.

This follows news that CBSSports.com would use the video platform to power HD content for March Madness — since Silverlight is up against the de facto standard of *Adobe* Flash. (Silverlight only launched in 2007, and an estimated 76 percent of online broadcasters were already using Flash then, a number that’s likely higher now).

Staci adds: It’s not quite the same as being chosen for technology alone. This is a complicated partnership and Microsoft declined comment for now on sponsorship commitments or other financials. Microsoft made a significant ad spend with CBS (NYSE: CBS) Sports but didn’t get branding on the “high-quality” player. When we reported that story, I asked if Silverlight would make the cut without Microsoft as a sponsor. The same holds true for NBCU and the Olympics.

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