NAB Perspectives: The Hego Group Dives Into U.S. Market With Touchscreen, TRACAB

Sweden-based Hego Group continues to make waves in the U.S. sports market, showcasing its sports-data solutions at last week’s NAB Show. From its earliest days as a timing company, Hego has focused on the capture, creation, and management of data. Its diverse product lines on display included the GS2 continuous-rendering engine, AKI virtual-graphics and telestration products, and TRACAB real-time tracking system.

“We’ve got the touchscreen product, we have virtual photo placement, augmented reality for studios [that can be used] for ad placement, object placement, [or] stats placement in sporting events like baseball [or] basketball. And we have player-tracking data gathering with TRACAB,” says Hego US President Kevin Prince. “We actually cover three very major portions from presentation [and] production through to team analysis and team data gathering.”

Anchoring the Hego booth was the AKI GS2 Multi-Touch, which integrates with major touchscreen technologies using industry-standard touch-protocol interfaces. Multiple live video streams, real-time 3D graphics, preproduced video clips, dynamic data-driven content, and many other graphic objects can all be implemented within an interactive multitouch solution.

“We’ve always been focused — because we’ve been a production company ourselves — on delivery,” says Ian Wray, group sales director, Hego Denmark. “We need to be able to take all these media files, all these different video codecs, these different live video screens, all these different data sources and present [them] on an interactive platform. It’s really important to be able to create the underlying architecture to make an easy way to be able to create the final masterpiece.”

TRACAB, which provides live 3D performance metrics for sports ranging from football to basketball to tennis, was also on display. With the ability to package captured data into different media products for different platforms — such as broadband, broadcast, print, and mobile — TRACAB has already found success with the FIFA World Cup, Spain’s La Liga, and Mexico’s Televisa. Even so, Hego unveiled several enhancements for this year’s NAB Show.

“We’ve now integrated [TRACAB] with our line-based tracking system: a virtual football system where it understands perspective,” says Wray. “It understands where the camera is in relation to the pitch, and, if we already know where the camera is in relation to the pitch, we know where the players are in relation to the pitch. What we can then do is some quite clever things, like put labels to all moving objects.”