Thuuz works with IBM on Fox Sports' bespoke World Cup highlights
By Martin Ross
Thuuz Sports, a USA-based company that generates custom short-form video content using artificial intelligence-based data, is working with IBM, the global technology company, to provided tailored Fifa World Cup highlights on a platform launched by Fox Sports, the sports broadcaster that holds rights to the tournament in USA.
Fox Sports’ ‘Fifa World Cup Highlight Machine’ launched earlier this month incorporating highlights from 300 archive games and will offer action from the 2018 tournament as hosts Russia tackle Saudi Arabia in today’s opener.
Having been hired by Fox in a wider role, IBM has built the front end of the highlights platform, including the full layout and user interface, and turned to Thuuz for the back end in order to generate custom highlights based on fans’ search queries.
Thuuz Sports’ business is based on two pillars: helping to generate bespoke short-form highlights to be used on digital platforms; and the creation of artificial intelligence-based ‘metadata’ around sports events. The company was formed in 2010 by Warren Packard, a venture capitalist, who wanted to help fans find the most exciting games to watch amid the plethora of different channels.
Highlights on Fox Sports’ platform are created from user queries as searches using Thuuz’s data science and excitement ratings delivers the highlights playlist, which users can then share via social media (and which will update automatically based on search criteria).
The highlights, which are geo-blocked outside the USA, are free of charge and sponsored by Adidas, the sportswear giant that is a World Cup sponsor.
The archive content dates back to 1958 and users can filter their searches by tournament, team, player, match and various match actions (such as goals, shots, saves and red cards).
Fox Sports is an existing client of Thuuz with the US sports broadcasting giant having previously embedded Thuuz’s demo player and worked together on excitement ratings for matches.
Thuuz reached an agreement with Eleven Sports towards the end of last year, helping to create short-form videos around the international pay-TV broadcaster’s programming, picking out certain aspects of matches based on the audience’s level of interest.
Work with NBC Sports also continued this year, notably including the integration of Thuuz’s intelligence system into the ‘NBC Sports Scores’ app during the 2018 winter Olympics to create numbers, headlines and tabs based on how exciting games or events are.