The NBA and GameOn Technology announced a partnership this week where the league will take advantage … [+]
As sports move into the new decade, it can be argued that the key new technologies that will define tech’s impact will be the influx of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) related to how teams conduct their business objectives. These businesses use range from improving performance on the field and for in-game decision-making to achieving revenue objectives through utilizing the technology to make better use of the enormous amounts of data that teams and leagues collect from fan shopping habits and online behavior.
As part of this process, AI is being utilized to automate chat to reduce manpower needs. With this in mind, the National Basketball Association (NBA) announced a partnership this week with AI chatbot company GameOn Technology that will engage fans of the league through Facebook Messenger to deliver highlights in-game. The chatbot will deliver news updates as games unfold each evening as well as game previews, tailored news notifications, scoring alerts, schedules, and even GIFs. Fans will be able to have a customized experience depending on their favorite teams and players.
“The NBA chatbot provides another way for NBA fans to engage with our league when it is convenient for them,” said Coleen Kane, NBA Director, Emerging Technology. “We are fortunate to work with GameOn to create a truly personalized experience.”
The NBA chatbot will be powered using GameOn’s proprietary development and integration platform called ChatOS. ChatOS was designed to deliver streamlined content via messaging and voice applications directly to brands and then allowing the brands to deploy the content across their individual array of platforms in a manner that they deem the best fit for their consumers or, in the NBA’s case, the fans of the league.
“The NBA has worked tirelessly to expand its reach across borders and formats to make it widely accessible to more of the world. The NBA chatbot is the latest example of the league’s successful efforts to expand how they connect with new and existing fans in innovative ways,” said Kalin Stanojev, co-founder and chief product officer at GameOn. “NBA fans now have another format to engage with the league that’s mobile and flexible; it provides the NBA with new ways to deliver rich, immersive action while providing fans with more dynamic content and more control over how they interact with the NBA.”
As new technology continues to enter sports, more teams and leagues have been able to realize and capture value from the use of automated chat. For example, a ticket office could have multiple fans ask about ticket prices or the availability of tickets, in the overnight hours that staff then needs to address individually the next morning. But through chatbot technology, fans can automatically and immediately obtain the answers they need to commonly asked questions, which enables teams to take advantage of a fan’s interest as it is happening.
“Since the launch of our first sports chatbots and with recent leagues coming on board like the NHL and PGA TOUR, we’ve seen more sports brands begin to realize the incredible power of chat to create an entirely new, more dynamic fan experience,” said Alex Beckman, co-founder, and CEO of GameOn. “As fan consumption behaviors continue to shift, and as brands seek new ways to deliver content to them wherever and whenever we will continue to explore more partnerships like this one with the NBA.”
GameOn was founded in 2014 and has raised $3.5 million dollars since its inception. It has partnered with notable sports brands, such as Arsenal F.C., as well as media brands TIME Inc. and Sky Sports and will also be used by the NHL and the PGA Tour.