in September, 2019, Intel and Alibaba had signed a strategic Memorandum of Understanding heading towards the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games and the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games. Both companies teamed up to announce the launch of 3D athlete tracking – where cameras capture the movement of the athletes and AI processors can analyze the athlete’s biomechanical movements thereby allowing the games to be viewed in more detail. The two companies will be working together to give new technologies such as 360 degrees 8K virtual reality, 3D digital twinning, and cloud broadcasting ahead of the Tokyo and Beijing Winter Olympics in 2022. Intel will be bringing forward its processors and AI technology whereas Alibaba will be bringing its cloud infrastructure and services expertise.
The combination of the computer works vision with deep AI learning algorithms will generate a 3D Mesh that enables coaches and trainers to extract very intricate real-time biomechanical data via multiple standard cameras without using special sensors or suits. This data allows athletes and coaches/trainers to review the performance in much higher detail. Specifically, the technology leverages advanced pose modeling techniques and other AI algorithms that have been designed to analyze the biomechanics of an athlete’s movement. This will not only bring about a better viewing experience but will also allow the athletes to perfect their technique to the minutest detail and also allow coaches to develop better training plans. This will allow the fans to see how different athletes match up to one another, to the smallest of differences. “Optimized to run on Alibaba Cloud infrastructure, Intel developed a novel technology concept called 3D Athlete Tracking that uses AI to analyse video of athletes in ways that are expected to improve both the training process and has the potential to enhance the audience experience during actual competition. This technology has incredible potential as an athlete training tool and is expected to be a game-changer for the way fans experience the Games, creating an entirely new way for broadcasters to analyse, dissect and re-examine highlights during instant replays”, said Navin Shenoy – Executive Vice President and General Manager, Data Centre Group, Intel.
Given the current situation with regards to the pandemic at hand, the Tokyo Olympics have been pushed to 2021 and the sporting world awaits a statement from the companies to see if the deal will be completed or not.