IBM: Data is a real game changer
Nowadays data analytics is everywhere and everyone tries to use data analytics to their advantage. Even in the sports sector, data analytics has become increasingly popular in providing coaches and players with the right information on how to improve their overall performances. The data doesn’t only provide insightful information on their own sports performances, but also on the performances of their rivals.
For the past several years IBM has challenged itself in how to bring technology to sports fans. In collaboration with companies across several industries IBM tries to ensure they are taking advantage of the new opportunities available through analytics, the cloud, social media and mobile devices. IBM has realised that live streams of sports events produce a lot of data that can be used to provide fans, coaches and players with new insights.
As a long-time technology partner of the United States Tennis Association (USTA), and other Grand Slams, IBM has helped fans watch and enjoy tennis over the past several Grand Slams in 2015. With their new SlamTracker, IBM is able to enrich tennis fans’ knowledge and appreciation no matter where they are. Based on more than 41 million data point over the past eight years of Grand Slams, SlamTracker identifies key moments in the match to pin point what the player needs to win the match. By analysing the streams of data available through live streams, and comparing those to the available data, IBM can point out “moments of achievement”, “Keys to the Match”, other real-time statistics and indicators that are most likely to affect the player’s ability to succeed.
This new application gives IBM the ability to predict sequences of current matches, while they’re happening. Fans can follow the statistics of each player during the match on their second screens, their mobile devices. For example you can not only see an ace being served by Serena Williams, but also see deeper insights into how that particular ace fits in context to the overall serves of Serena during that match.
The detailed statistics and analysis, gathered by IBM, are also being presented to the players and their coaches. With this data tennis players will be able to study their match performance more precise than ever before and make huge improvements in training for the next Grand Slam. The data helps players optimize their performance against specific opponents on different playing surfaces.
Will data become a real game changer in all sports categories? Overall I think data will have a huge impact on how, not only tennis players but all kinds of sports players/teams, adapt their tactics to specific opponents in order to increases their chances of winning. When companies like IBM turn to the sports industry and start analysing every sports player in the industry, soon a lot of data will become public and change the way professionals play their game.
Will the entire sports world turn in to a data driven industry, changing the game? Let me know whether you think data analytics will change the sports industry in the comment section below.
Author: Milou Saraber