Drive To Discover
2012 Games dubbed the "App Olympics"
The 2012 London Games mark the first time that you can experience your favorite Olympic sport in the palm of your hand, live. Some are calling these games the "App Olympics" because of the hundreds of apps associated with the games.
It's possible that more people will be enjoying the 2012 Games on mobile devices than on television sets.
Jeff Haynie, Co-Founder and CEO of Appcelerator, says, "It will be the first big Olympics where you're going to see a lot of other applications and contents around the Olympics that are not necessarily endorsed by, let's say, the Olympic Committee. Lots of companion apps, if you will, or apps around the content that will add value to the ecosystem."
The App Store and Google Play are filled with hundreds of related downloads. There are media company apps with a little about everything, team apps focused on just one sport, and individual apps, supporting a single competitor.
Behind all three kinds is Mountain View's Appcelerator. To make app building easier, Haynie's company developed Titanium, a family of tools to help large enterprises like the Olympics (and governments and businesses) quickly get into the game. An example of one built this way is Future Champ, the personal app of boxer Jose Ramirez. It provides his fight schedule, Olympics results, a fan photo album, and match videos.
Deck Pass is the official app of Team USA Swimming, from trial results to the official roster. With a performance log and calculator for any competitive swimmer who would like to use it.
The London 2012 app provides a description and history of every sport, every participating country, its top medal sports, schedule of every event, and medals tally.
Haynie was part of the dot-com boom in Atlanta during the Olympics in that city. He recalls that early years in the app business were good to dorm room developers. Today, big events and businesses require industrial strength apps, with projects involving large teams and big data. And users today are demanding full media full time.
Isn't there a risk that all that live streaming during the Games could slow the carrier networks to a crawl?
"Let's hope so," he chuckles. Let's hope he's kidding.
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