Helping O2 build immersive second-screen app experiences for international sport

Audience participation is changing rapidly with the advent of new technology, and people are consuming content in new and exciting ways. While these trends present opportunities, meeting high audience expectations demand a lot from companies looking to deliver innovative experiences. Using Pusher O2 met this challenge head-on, creating an engaging second-screen experience which brings sports fans closer to the action.

For the Six Nations Rugby tournament, O2 launched O2 Matchday, a second-screen app to enhance the experience of fans. This app relays live data and scores to users during matches, as well as having an audio stream of the referee. They used Pusher to send the processed data to the app and update stats and scores in real time. This provided a more immersive, engaging experience for the user and a richer level of data to the game.

Rapid development and deployment

Like many teams, the developers in The Lab have a lot of projects on the go, and need to deliver to tight deadlines. They chose to combine a number of powerful cloud services to make up their infrastructure, and avoided building custom infrastructure wherever possible.

Pusher was one part of that picture, taking live data from Opta Sports, and distributing it to participating users. By utilising cloud services, the developers could quickly put together an immersive experience, without spending the majority of their efforts on creating infrastructure.

Low risk scaling

Not only did using cloud services allow them to develop rapidly, it also provided them with an infrastructure that could scale with no additional effort. Going this route also avoids protracted negotiation with IT about finding servers, and removes concerns about long term costs.

Pusher is a great solution for such events. We’re able to provide extremely flexible pricing that support short-lived campaigns with no long term commitments. Our goal is to take away this consideration so that developers are free to be creative without constraints.

Pusher service was a perfect fit for this type of app where we are delivering small data updates to a large number of clients in near real-time to provide an engaging user experience.

– The Lab

An immersive experience

Most importantly The Lab delivered an app that fans love, truly bringing them close to the on-field action. The project will now serve as a template for future applications and we can’t wait to see how the team build on the experience.

O2 plan to re-use the platform for additional events and increase the level of functionality over time. Unlike traditional infrastructure for this type of campaign, all the cloud services can be turned off, when it isn’t running, and resurrected at short notice when the next competition comes around!

The application is now available on iPhone, Android and Blackberry. To learn more about the project you can read The Lab’s own blog post.

Let us help you

We get a great overview of these type of trends, and would love to speak to companies doing similar projects to show how we can help out. Get in touch with to discuss how we can help you interact with your audiences at scale.

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