USTA & Partners Set to Bring US Open Experience Virtually
August 29, 2020
FLUSHING, N.Y., August 28, 2020- The United States Tennis Association (USTA) today announced plans to bring the US Open experience to new and existing fans across the world through innovative digital platforms and engaging content that will help people enjoy some of the US Open fan favorites from their homes. These fan engagement activations will give fans unparalleled access to the US Open, including in-stadium virtual fan boxes, recipes from world-renowned chefs, and for the iconic Honey Deuce US Open signature drink, and at-home viewing kits, allowing the 2020 US Open to redefine and deliver the US Open fan experience like never before.
US Open Fan Cam powered by American Express: Even though the electric crowds that are synonymous with Arthur Ashe and Louis Armstrong Stadiums will be watching from home this year, their cheers will still be seen and heard by the players and viewers around the world, thanks to the US Open Fan Cam powered by American Express. Fan Cam will enable fans everywhere, via the US Open Mobile App, to record their cheers and encouragement for their favorite players and then submit those cheers to the US Open. Fan cheers will be shown on the new LED screens that will surround Arthur Ashe Stadium during this year’s tournament.
Ask a Player: Within the Fan Cam powered by American Express experience, Amex Card Members will get exclusive access to ask a player a question that could be incorporated into an on-court post-match interview in Arthur Ashe Stadium.
Virtual Player Boxes: The player box, which traditionally hosts players’ guests including coaches, family and friends near the court, will be recreated virtually this year. Each player scheduled for a match within Arthur Ashe Stadium will have the opportunity to invite their guests to be part of the experience through the LED boards in Arthur Ashe Stadium, which will allow for live interaction during select moments, like changeovers.
Open Questions with Watson Discovery: To give fans a way to engage remotely in iconic sports rivalries, IBM will facilitate debates among fans on USOpen.org. Starting with questions like who is the best player of all time, who is the top US Open Champion and more, IBM will use Watson’s natural language processing (NLP) capabilities to scour millions of online sources and then, using IBM Research technology, it will deliver a debate-like pro/con argument. Fans will also be able to share their opinions on the questions, adding to the debate.
USOpen.org Match Insights presented by IBM: Match Insights with Watson Discovery is an AI-powered “cheat sheet” available to fans for every match. Match Insights uses NLP technology to search for and understand millions of articles, blogs, statistics and more. It pulls key insights from that mountain of data and converts it into a brief narrative form, enabling every fan to get insights from information ahead of matches.
Crowd Sounds: When faced with the prospect of no fans in attendance, the USTA, ESPN and IBM embarked on a collaborative journey to bring authentic crowd sounds into the presentation of matches. IBM leveraged its AI Highlights technology to recreate crowd sounds gleaned from hundreds of hours of video footage captured during previous US Opens. AI Highlights uses Watson technology to digest match footage and rank the excitement level of each point to create highlights in near-real time and classify specific crowd reactions. That insight has been reimagined to deliver real crowd sounds to the stadium and broadcast producers’ arsenals.
Chase will deliver a US Open Kickoff Concert featuring Khalid, Chloe x Halle and Kane Brown on Friday, August 28 at 7pm ET. This at-home concert is part of the Chase Sound Check platform and will be streamed via US Open Twitter and Facebook pages, as well as Chase YouTube and Twitter pages.
The Warm-Up Presented by Chase will be a daily companion viewing experience for fans. The Warm-Up is the fans’ daily guide through this epic, once-in-a-lifetime tournament. It will provide a virtual daily program highlighting the key matches and personalities, the small dramas, the historic opportunities and the laughs to be had along the way. The Warm-Up will run across three US Open social media platforms – Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
At-Home Guide on USOpen.org: The At-Home Guide will be fans’ one stop to make the most of their US Open at-home experience. The Guide includes everything from downloadable recipe cards from acclaimed chefs, tune-in information, essential merchandise, fun activity books for kids, video call backgrounds and a US Open 101 guide for those new to the event. Click here to visit the US Open at-home guide.
US Open Chef Recipes: The US Open is known for its unparalleled dining experience which annually serves up chef-driven, elevated menu items to more than 700,000 fans onsite. This year, the US Open culinary experience will be transported to viewers’ homes with delicious recipes from world-renowned chefs. To view the 2020 US Open chef recipes, please click here.
To experience the US Open in style with the at-home suite, visit USOpenShop.org.
Facebook & Instagram Shopping: For the first time ever, the US Open Shop has gone social, partnering with Facebook and Instagram to create shopping experiences for fans directly from these platforms so they can buy US Open merchandise even when they can’t access the grounds.
Grey Goose: Fans will be able to enjoy the iconic signature cocktail of the US Open, the “Honey Deuce,” at home with fun and easy-to-make cocktail kits. The US Open Honey Deuce kits come complete with commemorative US Open champions’ cups and will be available in major US markets through a partnership with Sourced Craft Cocktails, including New York City, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Austin, Dallas/Fort Worth, Washington D.C., Miami, Denver, Nashville and Phoenix.
Kim Crawford: Available through August 31, Kim Crawford is offering New York residents a chance to win the Ultimate US Open Watch Party Kit with an exciting enter-to-win sweepstakes contest. These kits will include Kim Crawford wines and US Open merchandise for fans to enjoy during their US Open at-home experience.
For more information on the 2020 US Open virtual fan activations, please visit usopen.org/athome and follow us on social media @USOpen using #USOpen to share your US Open at-home experiences.