Volvo Innovate Media Technology for Fans


Last week Brad Butterworth was quoted as saying that yacht racing couldn’t capture the imagination of the public because it didn’t translate well to TV, but how much does TV matter in a world that is always connected?

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The Volvo Ocean Race is utilising the latest in digital media technology to create a mobile channel that features the most comprehensive multimedia coverage of any offshore race to date.

Advances in technology since the last edition of the race, along with the addition of a dedicated media crew member on board each of the eight boats, will ensure that all the action is closer to hand than ever before.

“Our audience demands content that is exciting, accessible and immediate,” says Knut Frostad, CEO of the Volvo Ocean Race. “Our multimedia channels, including mobile, help us bring the story closer to the audience and maintain our strong tradition of leading at the forefront of communications technology.”

The mobile channel supports the existing web site allowing users to follow the race 24 hours a day, seven days a week when the boats are at sea in some of the most remote parts of the planet.

“In this age of a crowded media landscape, it is critical for an event like ours to make our story easily accessible,” says Andrew Ferguson, Head of New Media and IT for the Volvo Ocean Race. “Ericsson started by understanding our audience and our media operations and then integrated as seamlessly and effectively as possible the new multimedia channels that we wanted to promote.

“They’ve been extremely flexible in enabling us to evolve to accommodate new channel opportunities – like IPTV – into our planned operations so we can stay at the cutting edge of new media.”

Geoff Hollingworth, director of Innovation at Ericsson says the Volvo Ocean Race event is a living vision of the future: “Our goal is to keep the next generation multimedia evolution as simple as possible, to keep the focus where it really needs to be, on the audience and their experience. That is what we are doing with the Volvo Ocean Race.”