Jacksonville Jaguars Deploy ChyronHego Virtual 1st to Enhance In-Stadium Video Presentation

The Jacksonville Jaguars have installed the first-ever stadium Jumbotron deployment of Virtual 1st, ChyronHego’s “down and distance” broadcast-graphics solution designed specifically for American football. Virtual 1st provides animated virtual first-down and line-of-scrimmage graphics to enhance the real-time action displayed on the Jaguars’ new 8K HD LED video scoreboards, the largest of their kind in the world.

Designed as a tool for broadcasters to enhance live football-game coverage, Virtual 1st combines video overlay and sensorless camera technology to help presenters quickly analyze game play and tell an engaging and easy-to-follow story. Broadcasters are able to insert virtual lines of scrimmage, first-down lines, and animated graphics to highlight down and distance, with the ability to customize the graphics to match the network’s on-air style.

As part of the Jaguars’ massive 2014 renovation project for its home stadium, EverBank Field, the team became the first organization to apply the Virtual 1st technology outside the broadcast realm. After initial testing early in the 2014 season, ChyronHego worked with the Jaguars to develop a custom interface for Virtual 1st to the Daktronics software driving both of the giant end-zone scoreboard/video displays. This solution completely automates the exchange of data between Daktronics and Virtual 1st, eliminating margin for error by removing the need for an operator to manually enter the data.

“We’re all about fan engagement. That means putting on big-screen shows that will give our fans an unforgettable experience once they’re inside the stadium. With Virtual 1st, we’re really giving them something to cheer about,” says Sam Thompson, control room engineer and game day director, Jacksonville Jaguars. “ChyronHego bent over backward, including flying expert engineers in from the UK, to build a Daktronics interface that would meet our requirements — and Virtual 1st has worked flawlessly since then.”

With the success of Virtual 1st for enhancing the game-time big-screen presentations, the Jaguars’ sales department is now exploring a variety of additional revenue-generating opportunities using ChyronHego’s Virtual Placement solution. Among the possible applications is a system of digital signage throughout the stadium with advertising enhanced by virtual graphics.

“The Jaguars’ installation is a huge milestone for Virtual 1st. We always knew it was a highly versatile product, but, by extending its use beyond the broadcast studio and into the stadium, the Jaguars have really put Virtual 1st on the map,” says Mark Bowden, senior product manager, ChyronHego. “We also deeply appreciate the opportunity to work with the Jaguars to improve the product. After adapting it to their needs, we’re now able to offer a solution that doesn’t just add excitement to the fans’ experience in the stadium but is also incredibly easy for the operators to use and manage.”

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