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  • Intel to 'Raise the Bar' for Tokyo 2020


    09/11/19

    (ATR) Intel unveils its plans for Tokyo 2020, including 3D athlete tracking and a more immersive virtual reality (VR) experience.

    Intel and partners for Tokyo 2020 (IOC)
    The technology company, along with the IOC, the Tokyo Organizing Committee of the Olympic Games (TOCOG) and a broad array of partners, promises to “raise the bar” from its inaugural efforts at PyeongChang 2018.

    3D Athlete Tracking (3DAT), a first-of-its-kind computer vision solution, uses artificial intelligence to enhance the viewing experience for Olympic fans.

    Developed by Intel and hosted on Intel-based data centers in Alibaba’s cloud infrastructure, 3DAT, in partnership with Olympic Broadcast Services (OBS), uses four pan-tilt mounted, highly mobile cameras to capture the form and motion of athletes and then apply pose estimation algorithms to analyze the biomechanics of athletes’ movement. The system transforms that data into broadcast overlay visualizations available during replays of the 100m and other sprinting events.

    In addition to the 3DAT, fans can expect an even better version of Intel True VR, which debuted in PyeongChang as the largest scale virtual reality event to date.

    Intel True VR will be deployed over a range of sports and venues in Tokyo and content will be distributed to rights holding broadcasters for the opening and closing ceremonies, athletics, gymnastics, boxing and beach volleyball.

    In a briefing to reporters, Intel said the amount of 3D and VR content viewers will see will be up to each individual rights holding broadcaster.

    “After a very successful PyeongChang 2018, we’re excited to partner with Intel once again to bring the next era of technology to Olympic Games Tokyo 2020,” Timo Lumme, Managing Director of the IOC Television and Marketing Services, said in a statement.

    “Our extended collaboration with Intel allows us to provide the best experiences and technology to all Olympic fans who attend our events and those viewing in from around the world.”

    The IOC and TOP Partner Intel are also collaborating to define and implement solutions to train venue managers using VR. Intel says its training system provides a more realistic experience and produces a more effective learning experience.

    A facial recognition system called “NeoFace” will be used to identity more than 300,000 accredited athletes, volunteers, media, and other staff at entry points to venues and accommodations.

    Besides helping to prevent identification fraud and the security risks tied to that, the facial recognition system will reduce wait times for ID checks for accredited visitors. Reporters were told that it may or may not shorten the wait times for fans and other non-accredited visitors to the various venues.

    Intel AI solutions were used to create the official theme song for Tokyo 2020. Audiences will hear the call part and follow the response part to clap their hands. Working with Tokyo Organizing Committee, venues including live theater sites will support athletes to maximize their performance by creating excitement with #2020Beat.

    Intel Extreme Masters was held ahead of PyeongChang 2018. (Intel)
    Intel on Wednesday also announced the Intel World Open esports tournament will take place ahead of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. This follows the first esports experience delivered at Intel Extreme Masters PyeongChang ahead of the last Winter Games.

    The Intel World Open will feature Capcom’s “Street Fighter V” and Psyonix’s “Rocket League,” and kicks off with online qualifiers in early 2020 where any player, at any level can compete for a chance to join their national team. A live qualifier event in Katowice, Poland in June will determine which seven of 20 national teams will join Japan and advance to the championship esports tournament in Tokyo from July 22-24, 2020.

    The live finals in Tokyo will host fans at the Zepp DiverCity venue. Intel will power all of the live Intel World Open events with the Intel Core i7 gaming processor, as well as the PCs used in the broadcasts and complete backend infrastructure.

    “We are excited Intel is bringing the Intel World Open esports tournament to Japan in the lead up to the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020," said said Kit McConnell, IOC Sports Director.

    "As we explore the engagement between esports and the Olympic Movement we are looking forward to learning from this event and continuing to engage with the passionate esports community from around the world.” 

    Written by Gerard Farek

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