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How the Australian Open and IBM are improving the fan experience

Uwear
|Jan 21|magazine8 min read

This year’s Australian Open is serving as a launching pad for improving fan experiences through real-time, data-driven storytelling and unified digital platforms.

Tennis Australia and long-time partner IBM have detailed the advanced and predictive analytics, cloud and mobile platform technologies being used for fan interactions during the opening day of the grand-slam event in Melbourne.

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According to IBM, approximately 41 million data points are being analysed by its predictive technology to generate real-time insights created through Tennis Australia’s SlamTracker app. However, this is expected to grow significantly as tennis grand slams across the world begin examining all historical data on IBM platforms for further insights.

One of the new additions for 2016 is a Tournament Notifications Dashboard, which is an app based on IBM analytics to automatically identify and classify statistics, updates and player stats from matches, while centralising them all on one dashboard. This can be used by Tennis Australia’s editorial and social teams to make real-time decisions on content to be shared with broadcasters and media outlets.

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The 2016 Australian Open will be the first to run completely on IBM’s SoftLayer cloud offering, which means all operational loads such as the content delivery network that drives digital applications and data services are being distributed and served from four global data centres. SoftLayer enables IBM to have the security, privacy and reliability of private clouds, with the economy and speed of a public cloud.

The shift to operating completely in a cloud environment provides better flexibility, load balancing and agility to navigate around scaling infrastructure. In addition, it gives the resiliency required to meet the digital needs of the Australian Open’s global audience.

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During last year’s event, Tennis Australia said 23 terabytes of internet traffic were handled by its network infrastructure, an increase of 136 per cent.

In the long-term, Tennis Australia hopes to personalise its site experience for fans even more by tailoring digital content to their preferences and behaviours.

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