August 26, 2022

RCS supports ESPN Netherlands TikTok live with Singular

ESPN embraces the cloud for new production

The Johan Cruijff Schaal has a special meaning for Dutch football fans, not least because the trophy is named after The Netherlands' greatest ever player. The season opener, played between the winners of the Eredivisie league and the KNVB cup, kicks the new season off in style. This year, ESPN Netherlands broke new ground by streaming the match live on TikTok.

ESPN seized the opportunity to explore the revolutionary web-based graphics platform,, through a longtime service provider, Reality Check Systems, who designed a graphics package purpose-built for TikTok.

Using Singular enabled ESPN to manage its whole graphics production inside existing SDI video workflows without friction. Singular’s Adaptive Overlays also made it easy for the RCS team to create a custom 9:16 format for the graphics, necessary for TikTok.

RCS created a bespoke, adaptive composition for streaming on TikTok in 9:16 which was operated out of a standard Singular web-based control interface. This allowed ESPN to easily add branded overlays without the expense or challenge of requiring dedicated hardware and operators on site.

The benefits of a long-term partnership

RCS has worked with ESPN in The Netherlands since it first developed an ambitious remote graphics operation for live Eredivisie production almost a decade ago; one of the first of its kind.

Since then RCS has managed the client’s requested switch from Vizrt to Ross XPression and the relationship has grown to include projects across multiple sports and innovations such as HDR.

This is the first time RCS has delivered a graphics package and workflow using its expertise in Singular for ESPN. Cloud native production and data services are increasingly common elements of projects delivered by RCS across multiple platforms.

David Peacock, who led the project for RCS, mused, “RCS was historically known for its expertise in Vizrt but we are now adept at delivering solutions across myriad platforms. We partner with innovative clients who come to us with confidence we can deliver the perfect solution for each project, whatever the technical challenges.

ESPN listens to our ideas and demands the highest quality results. Thanks to our long-term relationship there is a level of understanding and trust that creates a highly effective working relationship.”

Singular Factor

Singular is one of the most popular solutions requested by clients as the platform continues to grow in adoption. Providing a high-quality live graphics workflow that is entirely web-based and requires no dedicated hardware, it offers an easy way for clients to quickly add new productions without significant capital expenditure or headcount.

Singular fits seamlessly into existing workflows and adds remote capabilities natively. As the only live graphics platform accredited for sustainability by  BAFTA’s albert consortium, it can also be a significant factor in helping clients reduce the environmental impact of their live productions. 

Andrew Heimbold, Singular CEO, commented: “Singular is seeing adoption from a wide range of clients around the world. This year we’ve seen accelerated growth as more clients and partners start to really understand the full scope of the platform. We recently hit a new record of over 2.2 million hours in a single month of live outputs with Singular graphics. Whether it is to supplement existing productions, spin up new complementary content creation or provide a web-based redundancy solution, Singular is proving its worth at scale. We are working on some exciting projects that will be launching in the next six months and these will further showcase what Singular can do both in traditional productions and next-gen virtual environments with adaptive and interactive graphics.”

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