Ooyala helps football clubs, leagues, and more deliver ‘TV Anywhere’ for Super Fans

Ooyala was at IBC to lay out its vision for a “TV Anywhere” environment that continues to see the company make wins with individual football clubs, leagues, federations, and more. A partner like Ooyala manages online highlights and streaming capabilities and also provides apps for Apple OS and Android OS devices while also helping clients develop market strategies.

But its steps being taken by football clubs that could prove to be the biggest boon to those in the TV Anywhere marketplace as the sheer number of clubs across Europe and around the world provide a vast customer base that, increasingly, is taking control of its own assets. The goal? To better serve the “Super Fan.”

“They are seeing more and more engagement with fans on devices as they extend their fan base,” says Neil Berry, Ooyala EMEA, vice president. “And you are seeing more TV production being done in house and things like one hour live shows before every match and 45 minute highlight shows right after.”

ViolaChannel.tv, the official media Web site for ACF Fiorentina in Italy, is a perfect example of a future where clubs maximize the mix of data and video. And the Open at Royal Latham in July offered an interactive experience that allowed users to fly around a three dimensional graphic fly over of the course.

The Pac 12 Network in the US recently also launched its app and streaming service with Ooyala, providing an integrated digital television experience.

“Interactivity is important,” says Jonathan Wilner, senior director, Ooyala Business Product Management, of the ability to easily choose from a wide variety of video elements and live streams. “The Pac 12 Network wanted to be the most innovative service and by working with companies like us they can do more with video and offer an immersive experience with social networks, personalization, stats, and better visualizations. And all of that makes the experience more compelling.”

Tennis Australia is another Ooyala client that continues to embrace more and more streaming. This past January seven live streams were available but the organization is already talking about streaming live from everywhere, including the practice courts.

“We’re big on metadata management and providing a flexible management structure that offers more and more support for Cablelabs standards,” says Wilner. “And the nice thing about sports content is it has timed metadata so it is easy to personalize or customize the experience. And if you are trying to do highlights creation you don’t need to do manual input of score and data, allowing for first-pass cuts to be made. So that empowers clients like Tennis Australia.”

Also don’t underestimate the impact a single rights holder can have on an entire market. When British Telecom takes over Barclays English Premier League football matches next year an interactive two-way player could influence others.

“Something like that can push the whole market to do more TV Anywhere and interactivity and you can see things like live cameras, live press conferences, and more,” adds Wilner. “And the infrastructure is already there so you can take more and more control with less resources.”

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