IBM and the All England Club recently launched an all-new interactive digital experience for tennis fans, featuring an enhanced Wimbledon Website powered by IBM analytics and cloud computing technology to help fans better track Wimbledon 2012 results, including Venus Williams first first-round defeat in 15 years.
The redesigned Wimbledon site enables sports fans on the go to follow each serve and volley on their smartphone or other mobile device and delivers live TV and radio broadcasts along with an interactive IBM SlamTracker scoreboard. Wimbledon also will serve as the trial for IBM’s SecondSight technology on center court to track and analyze how player movement affects play during a match.
Following IBMs involvement in the recent French Open tennis and U.S. Open golf tournament events, this announcement further spotlights how IBM is applying technology to improve fan enjoyment of major global sporting events. IBM provides the technological backbone at several sporting events, including the U.S. Open tennis tournament.
As Wimbledon 2012 opened June 25, tennis fans accessing the new website, www.wimbledon.com, saw a site that has been completely redesigned to reflect the heritage and appeal of the event. IBM said it also tried to design the new site to offer the tournaments anticipated 16 million unique Website visitors a more creative and immersive experience through improved content, more powerful imagery and an intuitive navigation process.
Built on IBMs SmartCloud infrastructure to meet surges in demand, the Website integrates a new online broadcast channel, Live @ Wimbledon alongside the interactive analytics-enabled IBM SlamTracker scoreboard, providing a one-stop shop for fans wanting to interact with The Championships. For instance, fans could zero in to get more on Williams’ defeat in the first round this yearher first since 1997, and her worst at Wimbledonlosing 6-1, 6-3 to Elena Vesnina.
Featuring both TV and radio, Live @ Wimbledon blends live action from around the grounds by dropping into matches at crucial points in playa stream of one game, per set, per match, per hourwith the off-court color of a day at The Championships. In addition to the minimum of five hours live broadcasting per day, viewers will be able to enjoy prepackaged content, such as previews and reviews, match highlights and archive footage. The Live @ Wimbledon radio service will offer an enhanced and improved version of its popular predecessor (Radio Wimbledon), which will be available worldwide online and on the three local FM channels.
Together with IBM, we’ve created a new Website which features increased options for people to personalize their Wimbledon experience,” said Mick Desmond, commercial director at the All England Club, home of The Championships. “Visitors can follow the progress of their favorite players, view live match play clips of the days action, and access scores and results delivered in real time. We expect this increasingly engaging and personalized online experience to appeal to fans in ever greater numbers.
At this years Championships, IBM SlamTracker uses predictive analytics technology to enable fans to gain deeper insight into the match. SlamTracker is a multifaceted feature of Wimbledon’s digital presence that leverages historical and real-time data to add depth and insight to the Championship experience. The Momentum capability maps a match in real-time, visualizing key turning points and their causes (i.e., winners, aces, etc.).
Keys to the Match is a feature within SlamTracker that leverages historical and immediate data to determine the top three things a player must do in order to do well in a specific match. While SlamTracker is an example of how analytics drives insights for tennis, the uses for businesses are almost infinite. Businesses across multiple industries and geographies can gain insights from large volumes of data and then use that knowledge to choose the best strategies and better predict outcomes.
Also, following on from the 2011 pilot on Court 18, this year for the first time on Center Court, IBM will provide a trial of player-movement tracking. With IBM SecondSight, it will be possible to track the fastest moving players and how their performance changes, set by set and match by match. The system can provide new data that could help players, coaches, commentators and fans, and add a new dimension to fans’ understanding of the game of tennis.
This year, a completely new Website takes the understanding and insight into the Wimbledon Championships to a whole new level, said Alan Flack, IBMs program executive for Wimbledon, in a statement. Using the power of cloud computing, each individual data point is integrated instantaneously to deliver a powerful experience for fans, players, coaches and officials alike.