Tech and the US Open
For the first time, there is probably more technology off the court, than on the court at the U.S. Open.
Starting with the app. In 2017, USOpen.org and the US Open App created in partnership with IBM, will evolve to incorporate truly significant fan enhancements. Fans can also look forward to groundbreaking social media activations and additional onsite digital extensions. All of the offerings have been designed to deliver the most-connected and in-depth US Open experience for the fan, whether on site at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center or wherever they may be.
“The US Open continually breaks new ground in enabling its fans to have an immersive experience on their platform of choice,” said Kirsten Corio, Managing Director, Ticketing and Digital Strategy. “With IBM, our technology partner for more than 20 years, we have developed a full suite of capabilities to enhance the on-site experience, and to bring the energy and excitement of America’s Grand Slam to fans all over the world.”
“Showcasing the US Open in near-real time in the digital realm presents unique challenges,” said Noah Syken, IBM’s Vice President, Sports and Entertainment Partnerships. “With Watson and automated cognitive innovations, we can deliver a deeper, more meaningful experience for fans everywhere.”
For the first time at the US Open, IBM will leverage its artificial intelligence technology to deliver the most exciting moments and shots directly to the fans, wherever they may be. The AI-powered “cognitive highlights” will be developed by IBM Watson “watching” for outsized player gestures, “listening” to crowd noise and analyzing match stats. Cognitive highlights will be distributed across all US Open digital platforms and social properties scaling highlight coverage to more courts than ever before.
Player-specific Cognitive Highlights
US Open fans can now personalize their App experience to deliver them more content about their favorite players. New for 2017, when fans choose their favorite players, they can receive special push alerts with the best highlights from those players’ matches that won’t be seen anywhere else.
New Interactive Grounds Map
Navigating the US Open grounds has become easier with the debut of a new interactive grounds map which will become the attendee’s mission control. This location-aware, real-time “smart” map will allow fans onsite to see real-time scores overlaid on each court, when their favorite players are practicing and where they are in relation to the nearest restrooms and dining options. The map is integrated with the tournament’s Guest Info feature so that fans can ask direct questions to find specific services. The map is powered by geolocation services and more than 500 beacons onsite.
Guest Info presented by American Express
US Open Guest Info presented by American Express will continue to be the physical onsite assistance center for fans as it has been for over 10 years. Incorporated as a chatbot in the US Open App in 2016, this year Guest Info has evolved to become a natively integrated cognitive concierge, powered by Watson’s artificial intelligence, which will deliver location-based, conversational answers to any questions that fans may have.
Guest Info Social Chatbots
The US Open will be the first sports property to debut a live chatbot directly in Twitter, delivering all of the functionality of Guest Info via direct messages. Guest Info will also be available to fans as a live chatbot within Facebook messenger.
360 Practice and Grounds Cams
For the first time, the US Open App will enable fans anywhere to watch players practicing on the grounds. Live, 360 degree streams of the practice courts and the US Open grounds can be accessed through the US Open App and US Open social media channels, providing fans the opportunity to view players practicing onsite.
Snapchat Spectacles Snapbots on site
The 2017 US Open will be the first live sporting event to feature Snapchat’s Spectacles Snapbots on site. Fans can purchase their own Spectacles from Snapbots that will be located on the US Open grounds, and then use them to capture and share their US Open experience from their point of view.
On Opening Day, fans using Snapchat can morph their faces with a US Open-themed augmented reality lens.
CHASE Charge and Watch
The CHASE Charge and Watch device will enable more fans onsite at the US Open to charge their phone and watch live video simultaneously while they explore the grounds – all without using any cellular data.
US Open Digital tickets are now mobile-only via the US Open App, which is available on iOS and Android. This means that fans that choose to use digital tickets only need their smartphone to gain entry, transfer tickets to their friends or clients, or to sell sessions that they are unable to use.
US Open Fancam
In Arthur Ashe Stadium, fans can take control of a specialized in-stadium camera to take and share the ultimate selfie. By visiting USOpenFanCam.com on their smartphone, fans will be able to take remote control of one of the eight cameras to zoom into their exact seat location, take a photo and share on their social media profiles.
Live Streaming of US Open Matches
Through the US Open’s partnership with ESPN, fans based in the U.S. will once again be able to access ESPN’s live streaming of matches from up to 12 courts per day, as well as other content including player press conferences emanating for the US Open’s main interview room, on USOpen.org and the US Open App and the ESPN App.