You can now explore this extreme mountain biking course in augmented reality. (Courtesy of the Red Bull Content Pool)
Red Bull is planning to bring an extreme mountain biking course in Utah to viewers’ living rooms on Friday, using a new augmented reality experience on their smartphones.
When riders first launch themselves down the Red Bull Rampage course this week, fans will be able to explore a 3D model of the mountain that is both accurate to scale and photo realistic. They’ll be able to zoom in and move the course around with a touch of their fingertips.
(courtesy of red bull)
The experience, powered by Intel technology, plans to change the way fans consume the live streams of Red Bull’s sporting events, according to a spokesperson. The company is expected to launch additional augmented reality experiences for other events, which range from the extreme ice hockey race Crashed Ice to the ocean paddle board race Heavy Water.
Fans tuning in to the augmented reality experience for Red Bull Rampage will be shown multiple points of interest mapped across the course that will enable viewers to further explore exclusive content. That additional content will range from the four live 360-degree virtual reality cameras placed in key locations on the course, to point-of-view tricks and full runs, action highlights, interviews, and behind-the-scenes footage.
Red Bull is targeting the 3D map as a second screen experience that will supplement its traditional Rampage live stream. It will be accessible on mobile devices that support Apple’s ARKit and Android’s ARCore and that are running the latest Red Bull TV app. There will also be a live in-app “billboard” that will feature the livestream broadcast.
The experience was born out a culmination of efforts from Intel and Red Bull. To get the footage, an Intel drone was programmed to follow specific flight paths and altitudes over the venue, taking more than 1,200 high resolution aerial photos. That image data set was then processed in the Intel Insight Platform to create a comprehensive 3D visualization of the mountain.
Once the 3D model of the course was created, Red Bull’s product team worked with development partner Iconic Engine to layer in additional AR and VR elements and content.
“It was great to collaborate with Red Bull to bring to life a new and creative experience to the Red Bull Rampage event,” said Cindy Ng, the head of marketing at Intel’s drone group. “With the help of the Intel Insight Platform, a cloud-based data management and analytics software, customers like Red Bull are able to realize the power of aerial data so that their fans can experience live events like never before.”
Both the live broadcast announcers as well as the viewers will be able to interact with the digital mountain and witness real-time content updates.
Red Bull has long positioned itself more as a media company than a consumer product company. Though it started off three decades ago making energy drinks and continues to generate significant revenue from that business each year, its media business has been the company’s largest growth driver over recent years.
This new augmented reality and 360-degree video experience is meant enable fans to interact with events and content in ways never before possible, similar to what Intel did this past year with the Winter Olympics in PyeongChang. Red Bull has experimented with using technology to enhance the livestream in the past, including when building interactive 3D course maps for its extreme paddle-boarding event, Heavy Water, in the San Francisco Bay last year.