Australian Open 2014 will offer fans onsite and online a feast of ways to connect with the first Grand Slam tournament of the year in January.
The newly designed ausopen.com – which drew 15.5 million unique visitors in 2013 – is once again the centerpiece of an exciting digital program that reaches across mobile, social, video and radio and puts the world’s top tennis players in the hands of fans worldwide.
Ausopen.com, developed in partnership with Australian Open technology partner IBM, provides first access to live scores, draws, player profiles and scheduling information. The site also features the popular IBM SlamtrackerTM that uses IBM predictive analytics with data points from years of Grand Slam tennis to highlight what each player must do well in order to secure victory.
The website and official Australian Open You Tube channel will return more videos than ever before, serving up free, live action from seven courts at Melbourne Park (territorial restrictions apply). On top of live coverage there will be highlights of every televised match, day and night session round-ups and player interviews.
Fans can also go behind the scenes of the Australian Open, with feature videos covering everything from koala cuddling to racquet smashing and what goes on in the minds of the players.The popular Australian Open apps for Android and iPhone are back, allowing fans to keep close tabs on their favourite players with player alerts available to notify fans of match results, scheduling information and player news. The apps drew a combined 1.1 million downloads in 2013 and will be free to download in January. Fans can also access event coverage on the mobile version of ausopen.com – m.ausopen.com – by visiting the website on their preferred web browser.
New for 2014 is the official Australian Open iPad app, developed with IBM, and with a strong player focus. Fans can follow the tournament, keep track of their favourite players and directly tweet their support from the app, which also features live scores, news, photos, draws and schedules.
AO Radio is back across web and mobile platforms, providing live ball-by-ball coverage with a team of leading international tennis broadcasters. The stream is also available on 99.7 FM around Melbourne, as well as on the popular live music streaming platform, TUNEIN.
In a Grand Slam first, the Australian Open social media coverage will materialise in Garden Square, bridging the gap between the virtual and physical worlds at the SOCIAL SHACK. The @australianopen Shack is the centre of social media buzz at the Australian Open, giving onsite patrons further opportunity to take part in the coverage and get behind their favourite players in a virtual tug of war. Players will battle players in the social world and fans will have the final say as they spread messages of support across Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.
Fans worldwide can also enter the new Kia Greatest Fan photo and video competition by showing their dedication to much-loved Australian Open competitors to win the ultimate prize of a Kia Soul and many other treasures along the way. All they have to do is dress up in true Australian Open style, showing all the ways they like to express their enthusiasm for the tournament and those who are trying to win it, the players.
With over one million fans now linked to the Australian Open Facebook page and hundreds of thousands of Twitter followers, fans can expect a lively 24-hour coverage with access to exclusive behind scenes moments, score updates, fun stuff and short video highlights. Those wanting information about the event can tap into the information service line, @AOHelp.
Ways to connect: