CBS Sports have introduced their biggest technology push in US golf broadcast history in a drive to maximize the fan experience by delivering, amongst other things, immersive replays and putt prediction. This week marks the 28th consecutive PGA Championship for CBS however it will be the first to combine innovations such as 4D replay, Toptracer, Hawk-Eye Green Technology, Rover cam and Cup mics.
The introduction of new broadcast tools that have emerged in recent times will lend themselves very well to the demands of golf, a sport that is notoriously difficult to produce.
In what is a first for golf in the US, the broadcaster will adopt 4D technology, often used in other sports like basketball, technology such as a camera array that covers 270 degrees of the 15th tee box, allowing for 3D manipulation of the video. Not only can the video pan the full 270 degrees, but can also be slowed down and magnified in playback so that viewers can get a unique look at the tee shots from the world’s elite players.
"The goal is not to do technology just for technology's sake. We want it to enhance the viewer experience and complement our knowledgeable talent. These are great tools that are used superbly by our production team. This means the viewers will see more and newer ways of telling our stories."
Ken Aagaard, CBS Sports, EVP, Innovation and New Technology
CBS will also re-introduce the putt predictor, giving their viewers an idea of putting conditions, the graphical overlay of the contours of the green and lag putting line to illustrate the range that putts must roll to go in. On the fairway CBS will use Toptracer, software capable of tracking the flight of a golf ball in real-time.