Week 192 (17 – 23 June)
This week the International Olympic Committee announced an eight-year deal with Intel, making the technology titan a Worldwide TOP Partner through 2024.
IOC President Thomas Bach and Intel CEO Brian Krzanich officially announced the agreement in New York City, though speculation regarding the collaboration had been growing for weeks. Intel now joins other technology companies Panasonic, Samsung and Alibaba in The Olympic Partner (TOP) worldwide sponsorship programme.
However, what stands Intel apart from its competitors is a radical vision for enhancing the Olympic experience through 3D imaging, 360° content platforms and virtual reality, as well as the latest in 5G technology. It is these advancements that President Bach is excited about as the IOC continues to look for innovative and exciting ways to bring the action closer to fans, both inside the stadium venues and across the world.
"The Olympic Games provide a connection between fans and athletes that has inspired people around the world through sport and the Olympic values of excellence, friendship and respect,” said President Bach.
"Thanks to our new innovative global partnership with Intel, fans in the stadium, athletes and audiences around the world will soon experience the magic of the Olympic Games in completely new ways."
The 2018 Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang will be the first to benefit from this sponsorship deal, as Intel promises to make virtual reality viewing accessible with 360° replays, while 5G platforms will revolutionise communications over the next 10 years.
In this ever-evolving technological age, Intel wants to be a pioneer in changing the face of sports broadcasting. Many will already be familiar with the company’s equipment: it provided the “Shooting Star” drones that were used to create a floating US flag during Lady Gaga’s Super Bowl half-time show, while Major League Baseball has been using Intel for its live statistics. In April, the International Cricket Council (ICC) joined forces with Intel to be its “innovation partner” for the 2017 Champions Trophy, which included sensors in bats and VR technology to improve players’ technique. Expect these advances, and others, to be utilised throughout Olympic events as well as in the opening and closing ceremonies.
"The Olympic Games are great examples of connecting millions of fans at home with millions of things at the Games," Intel CEO Krzanich said. “The technology will give viewers a prime seat without even being there.”
There is a wealth of technology waiting to be introduced to the Olympic Games and while remaining true to the core Olympic values, the partnership between the IOC and Intel will allow fans globally a chance to fully immerse themselves in the Olympic experience.