Instead of putting to air a Full HD broadcast of the event the Nine network will air a pathetic poor quality 720p HD broadcast for the simple reason that they like the Seven and Ten networks are not interested in delivering quality broadcast for their viewers instead all they want to do is make money from advertising.
In the USA the NFL is broadcast by free to air networks in Full HD, the same applies in Canada with their Ice Hockey coverage and in the UK and most European Countries Full HD coverage of major sporting events such as the Premier League is standard, only in Australia do the free to air TV networks treat their viewers with contempt despite the fact that most consumers today own a Full HD TV.
Free to air TV stations are not interested in quality because it will cost money and while they spend millions buying up the rights to big sporting events they are not investing in the coverage of the events.
Fox Sports is on the other hand is attracting consumers to their sporting coverage for the simple reason that they invest in the coverage of the sporting events that they cover. Full HD is standard along with bird's eye view coverage and innovative camera positions.
What Channel Nine is delivering is 1990's TV even their callers are players from this era.
Ironically the Company puts repeats to air on their HD GEM in Full HD, they will also put the State Of Origin event to air in Perth on HD on GEM but not in NSW or Queensland where most of their viewers are located.
Lifehacker said "Nine isn't broadcasting in HD because it doesn't have to, and because not doing so will make it more money".
Digital switchover happened this year and up until then the Nine network was obliged to show Origin on its regular SD channel because it's on the anti-siphoning list which the government uses to "protect" major sporting events.
Nine could choose to broadcast in Full HD but the bottom line is that viewers are still going to flock to the network to watch the event so there attitude is "why bother". They can still charge advertisers a premium while duding viewers.
Maybe viewers should start lobbying the Federal Government to change their ant siphoning laws because if this happened Foxtel or Telstra could deliver this event over an IP network for free with bandwidth given away for free all funded by the advertising support.
Nine knows that until 2017, NRL enthusiasts who want to watch Origin won't have any other choice than watching the event on the Nine network, so why bother investing in better quality for viewers when you can treat them like shit because you have a monopoly.