The Audi e-Bike Wöthersee has already proved that bikes can be reconfigured to include smart technology that analyzes rider performance, but bringing this gamified approach to simpler sports may well be more difficult. Undeterred, one company has created the 94Fifty, a smart basketball, with built-in sensors that monitor player performance as well as challenge users to complete tasks.
While traditional basketball training relies on the coach’s eye to determine how players can improve their game, the 94Fifty contains six sensors, a Bluetooth radio, and battery embedded inside. While still playable like a regular ball, it can be connected to iOS and Android devices and deliver detailed stats on speed, arc, spin and dribbling – either shot-by-shot or over the duration of a game. There are also 50 different games that players can challenge themselves with. The app has four different settings – ‘Workout’ for individual practice, ‘QuickTraining’ for those focusing on one particular skill, ‘Compete’ for up to four players in a head-to-head match and ‘Challenge’, in which users can complete tasks, check their score and compete against others by adding it to an online leaderboard. Player history is stored for up to three months and the ball comes with a wireless pod for easy charging.
While similar devices have offered analysis of player performance, the 94Fifty adds an element of fun by enabling individuals to complete challenges. Could we soon see this kind of technology applied to other sports?
Spotted by: Lily Dixon