Latest in Sports

September 2, 2009

Fantasy Football Stats Coming to Your HDTV; Now You'll Never Have to Get off the Couch



A software company called Rallypoint is promising to put an end to the days of fantasy football fans trying to keep up with their fantasy teams on their laptop/desktop while also trying to watch the game on TV. Instead they want to put it all on your TV, with a new service called Rallycast. Intrigued by the idea, The Mac Bros. tracked down Rallypoint CEO Jeff Allen and asked him how it works, how it'll help us rule our league and whether it'll allow us to buy beer and pizza without getting our lazy butts off the couch. To our surprise, he answered our questions.

Who came up with the idea for Rallycast?
The original idea came late one night while watching GameCenter from bed. I was so frustrated from watching the ESPN ticker crawl across the bottom of the TV screen. I just wanted to get the score of the Michigan game. When it came time to see the score, the broadcast cut to commercial and the ticker disappeared! Why should I have to get up from bed to log onto my laptop? Why couldn’t I just point the remote control and see the scores come up? And if I can do that, why not the game stats? And why not my fantasy scores? And so on and so on.

So how does Rallycast work?
Rallycast’s TV Apps allow users to overlay personalized Internet content on their HDTV. It features a toolbar menu system where users can access TV Apps for fantasy sports, check sports scores and stats, send text messages and view Facebook.... Once customers have purchased their Internet-connected HDTV, they are able to download the Rallycast Toolbar from the Widget Gallery and activate their TV Apps. TV Apps can be personalized and synced with other
online accounts through the Rallycast TV Dashboard portal at www.rallycast.com.

What's this going to cost?
Rallycast Fantasy Sports is $59.99 for a single sport for one season via a pre-paid subscription-based card. Also consumers have the choice to purchase Rallycast Fantasy Sports for $15 a month rather than the $59.99 for a single sport for one season.

What equipment do I need?
Rallycast has partnered with major TV and DVD player manufacturers to give users the Internet in high definition. Current compatible HDTVs include Samsung (Series 6, 7, and 8 HDTVs that HDTVs support “Internet@TV”) and coming soon will be Vizio (XVT HDTVs that support Vizio Internet Apps VIA).

Here's the big question. How is it going to help us kick butt in our fantasy football league?
With the Rallycast Fantasy Sports package sports fans will have, for the first time ever, the ability to access real-time fantasy scores and stats, make roster substitutions for their existing ESPN, Yahoo and CBS fantasy sports leagues or even talk smack with their friends—all on their HDTV.

Rallycast TV Apps are overlaid within the television program the user is watching, so users never have to change the channel, connect their computer to the TV, or take a laptop into the living room. Users can see multiple TV Apps at the same time. So, when you turn your TV on Sunday morning and you see that Tom Brady went down in practice, or the coach pulled your star running back, you can swap him out for your backup without having to find your laptop.

What kind of stats am I going to be able to see on my TV?
Scoreboards for all of your leagues’ match ups in summary form. Scores of all the other games in your leagues. Standings of your leagues. Detailed position-by-position match up versus your weekly competitor. Team performance summary and player by player listing of the stats behind the fantasy score for the players—how many TDs, yards, INTs, etc.

And in the future, we are looking to add player performance details, such as weekly and season average breakdown of the stats behind the fantasy score for the player. And highlight videos.

Can you add an app that lets us order pizza and beer without getting off the couch?
Yes! An app for ordering pizza is in the works. Beer may present some legal issues, but that kind of convenience is what we’re aiming for.

Do you expect this to grow for other sports?
Yes! We are definitely doing fantasy sports for MLB, which we tested in 2009 but did not make available to the public, and will try out some new things for NBA, NCAA basketball and maybe some special features for Super Bowl.

1 comment:

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