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March 4, 2020 10:55 am

Seven Israeli Startups Changing the Game in Sports Tech

avatar by Adi Pick / CTech

Soccer Football – Champions League – Feyenoord vs Napoli – De Kuip, Rotterdam, Netherlands – December 6, 2017 Napoli’s Elseid Hysaj in action with Feyenoord’s Sven van Beek. Photo: REUTERS/Michael Kooren.

CTech – Technology is changing how we watch sports events and analyze athletic performance. New advancements have enabled us to watch a game through the eyes of a soccer player, or understand the metrics behind a basketball dunk, granting fans new ways to interact with their favorite sports and players from their own homes. Many of these innovative technologies have originated in Israel.

From small sensors that turn basketball hoops into smart baskets to motion sensors installed on players’ shoes, below are seven Israeli startups changing the sports tech arena.

PlayerMaker

Founded: 2014

Based in: Tel Aviv and London

Funding: $12 million

PlayerMaker, incorporated as Motionize Israel, develops a data-based soccer coaching tool designed to analyze metrics for physical, technical, and biomechanical performance. To collect data, PlayerMaker uses motion sensors installed on players’ shoes to track such indicators as gait and ball contact. PlayerMaker’s technology is used by teams including AFC Wimbledon, Argentina’s Olympic national team, Manchester City, and Israel’s Maccabi Tel Aviv.

WSC Sports

Founded: 2011

Based in: Tel Aviv

Funding: $39 million

WSC Sports Technologies uses artificial intelligence capabilities to analyze sports broadcasts in real-time, using machine learning to identify the various components of each sport and generate customized video highlights. The company’s technology identifies interesting moments in a game using a set of rules inputted into the system prior to the event. It takes into account, for example, noises such as crowd cheers, irregular movement, or dunks, goals, and home runs.

PlaySight

Founded: 2010

Based in: Kfar Saba

Funding: $26 million

PlaySight Interactive develops smart-court technology that enables players and coaches to use multi-angle video and analytics to improve on-court performance. The technology uses multiple HD cameras installed around the court that automatically record, analyze, and stream player activity, also making use of sensors worn by the players. PlaySight uses the data to create automatic replays and data-based analysis and evaluation tools.

Pixellot

Founded: 2013

Based in: Petah Tikva

Funding: $39 million

Pixellot develops production technologies that provide live, multi-angled, HD broadcasts of sporting events. The company’s software uses a system of cameras that cover the entire venue to monitor and broadcast the flow of the game without the need to deploy employees on site. Pixellot broadcasts over 80,000 hours a month from 6,000 sports fields and courts around the world, according to company statements. The company’s automated broadcasting technology can be found at some of the world’s most renowned soccer clubs, including FC Barcelona, Real Madrid, and Chelsea Football Club.

RSPCT

Founded: 2015

Based in: Tel Aviv

Funding: undisclosed

RSPCT Basketball Technologies develops a small sensor that turns basketball hoops into smart baskets that track field shot percentages, as well as each shot’s accuracy and full trajectory in real-time. RSPCT then turns that data into actionable insights for players and coaches. RSPCT’s technology is already being used by several NBA teams, according to company statements. Since the company’s technology computerizes the basket, players can train alone and still share accurate results with their coaches. RSPCT is backed by Houston Rockets Player Chris Paul, Philadelphia 76ers’ JJ Redick, and former NBA player Larry Hughes.

Replay Technologies

Founded: 2018

Based in: Tel Aviv

Funding: Acquired by Intel in 2016 for $180 million

Replay Technologies develops technology that allows viewers to see footage from an angle where no camera was placed, using a predefined array of virtual cameras spread across a given space, like a stadium, for example. The virtual cameras can provide perspective essentially from anywhere on the field, so viewers can visualize a goal from where it was kicked from.

MOVEZ

Founded: 2018

Based in: Herzliya

Funding: Bootstrapped

MOVEZ AI develops a mobile app that uses computer vision and artificial intelligence technologies to evaluate a user’s skills in sports that involve a ball, including basketball and soccer. The app is scheduled to launch in 2020.

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