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Artificial Intelligence the focus at Wimbledon 2018


Next month will make the 150th anniversary of the Wimbledon tennis tournament and with that will come the use of artificial intelligence to compile video highlights. 

IBM has been the Official Technology Partner of Wimbledon since 1990 and will use emotion/face recognition as a way to trigger replays and highlights packages.

Crowd noise, match stats (also provided by IBM) and analysing player motion will also be taken into account as an algorithm when deciding what gets uploaded to the Wimbledon website or posted on social media.

IBM says that the new tech could create highlights packages in minutes instead of hours, with a human review before the final posting.

IBM’s Sam Seddon said: “If you’ve got the visual element from the player, and you know that it’s a tight pressure point in the match, then those are the points that you are going to really target in on in the highlights package.”

“We are listening for the volume of the crowd – if you have got a fantastic rally that noise levels will go up and down during that point,” he said.

“When that is happening, we flag it as particularly interesting.”

Head of Communications, Content & Digital at the AELTC, Alexandra Willis, said: “We want to engage with existing as well as new fans around the world, to help them be part of Wimbledon 2018, especially in what will be such a competitive sporting summer.

“We want to tell the stories of the phenomenal athleticism of our great players, the gladiatorial nature of the matches they play and explain the sporting narratives that will cut through to our audience.” she said.

“IBM is critical to us in helping us place content with fans where they want to consume it and acknowledge the ever-increasing focus on video and new content formats in social media.”

Also, new this year will be an upgraded Chatbot for Facebook Messenger offering tailored highlights and chat with Fred the Wimblebot.

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