Portable TVs to be used at F1 races for real-time video


I went to the Grand Prix in Monaco one year and heard the entire race. That’s about it, though, as the cars were moving too fast and my view was obstructed by annoyances like “other people” such that I couldn’t see much of anything. A device called Kangaroo TV is looking to remedy that type of problem. Here’s more…

The gadget is about the size of handheld GPS receiver, with a 3in colour screen and navigation control pad. It receives live pictures from a series of cameras around the track that beam real-time video back, meaning that no area of the circuit is ever out of sight. Users are also able to switch to in-car cameras of designated drivers, giving them a behind-the-wheel view of the race. An earpiece connects them directly to commentary.

Very nice. It’ll be available at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone in July. Hey, you know what would be really awesome? If you could watch the race on a huge TV while sitting on a couch. Maybe indoors, even.

I kid, I kid. People like to be at the event to smell the oil and hear the engines revving and this Kangaroo TV thing will actually allow them to see what’s happening on the rest of the course rather than what’s happening on the stretch of course directly in front of them. The behind the wheel thing seems pretty cool, too.

“People attend live sports events for the atmosphere, the spectacle and in the case of motor sport the smell,” says Alain Charette, Kangaroo TV’s executive vice-president of corporate development. “But the experience can be ruined because most of the action takes place miles away from where you are standing. We offer the best of both worlds.” Fans will be able to hire out the gadgets at Silverstone for a fee of about £50 for the weekend, and Kangaroo says it is in talks with governing bodies of other sports including cricket, tennis and the International Olympic Committee.

The device underwent a trial run at last year’s F1 championship and will be more widely available this year. A similar offering by Sprint Nextel here in the states called FanView is available at NASCAR races.

Handheld TV brings action replays to live sport [Times Online]