Turner Sports Utilizes Google Trekker Technology to Deliver Unprecedented Digital Fan Experience for Ryder Cup
Thursday, September 22, 2016
“Hazeltine Explorer” to Offer Most Comprehensive and Immersive 360-Degree
Photo Experience Ever for Professional Sporting Venue
Interactive Course Tour Incorporates More Than 4,300 Photos
Across 160-Plus Acres of Hazeltine National Golf Club
Turner Sports, in collaboration with Google and Ubilabs, will provide the largest scale 360-degree photo experience ever for a sporting event through its coverage of this year’s Ryder Cup from Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minn. This unprecedented, interactive coverage will be showcased under the “Hazeltine Explorer” banner – available through RyderCup.com and the full suite of Ryder Cup apps – allowing fans to virtually walk the course from a first person perspective.
“Hazeltine Explorer” was developed by Turner Sports utilizing Google’s Street View Trekker technology, including the use of more than 4,300 photos. The interactive tour will also feature custom elevation graphs for every hole, integrated video highlights, course-specific historical moments and a fully responsive design.
Google’s Street View Trekker, a wearable backpack with a camera system on top, was walked throughout the course on foot to gather images from all 18 holes, the clubhouse, practice areas and other points of interest. That imagery was then stitched together to create 360-degree panoramas found via Google Maps. There were 15 lenses at the top of the mast, each pointing in a different direction to enable the creation of a 360-degree panoramic view. As the camera operator walked the course, photos were taken every two-and-a-half seconds.
Also built on the Google Maps API, a first of its kind Wayfinding feature (integrated into the Android and iOS applications) will deliver a detailed view of the course with routing instructions that account for walking paths and crosswalks to help enhance the spectator experience. This custom map – specifically built for the tournament layout of the course – will display on-course amenities and facilities at Hazeltine National Golf Club. The feature will be available exclusively for spectators attending the event.
In addition to these interactive products, RyderCup.com – managed by Turner Sports in partnership with the PGA of America and the European Tour – will provide extensive digital coverage including live video of the 2016 Ryder Cup held Tuesday, Sept. 27, through Sunday, Oct. 2.