An emerging semi-pro ultimate disc league has partnered with an AI-powered company to revolutionize avatars for its players.
The American Ultimate Disc League recently turned to Lensa AI to help turn a one-of-a-kind approach to avatars into a reality for the 2023 season.
Artificial intelligence company Prisma Labs released the Lensa AI app in 2018.
The photo and video editing platform has become one of the most popular apps on Google Play and the Apple App Store. After taking the photos of the players, the images will be uploaded to create animated avatars.
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The league plans to integrate the stylistic avatars into game streams on FS2. The avatars will also be displayed on AUDL’s digital spaces. FOX Sports, a unit of Fox News parent FOX Corp., will broadcast AUDL games on FS2.
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«Avatars created through artificial intelligence represent a new opportunity for sports content,» AUDL CEO Steve Hall said in a press release sent to Fox News Digital.
«We found an exciting way to use photos taken by our players and teams to create elevated graphics with Lensa. While we still have a lot to learn about this technology, I look forward to our league becoming a pioneer in this space.»
Lensa allows users to quickly and easily edit photos and videos by changing colors and backgrounds, cropping, adding music, or a variety of other special effects.
«We found that there was an opportunity to make progress in the AI space. With so much going on right now in that landscape, we really tried to think of different ways that we could use technology to help advance our league,» said the AUDL Senior Director. Product Marketing and Communications Ryan Pierce told Fox News Digital in a recent interview.
«We contacted Prisma Labs, which owns and operates the Lensa app…and they were very interested.»
For the past two seasons, «NFL on FOX» broadcasts have featured animated graphics of players displaying their stats or after scoring a touchdown. Those charts served as the inspiration for the AUDL.
«Specifically looking at FOX’s broadcasts of the past few years of the NFL, I really love the way they incorporate a kind of ‘player art’ into their broadcast graphics…the animated superhero-looking guys. And we thought that would be really cool to use in our league,» Pierce said.
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Ultimate Disc is one of the fastest growing sports in North America. The AUDL operates 24 teams in the US and Canada. The league season consists of 13 weeks with games on Friday, Saturday or Sunday.
Each team plays six home games and six away games over the course of the regular season. The top three seeds in each of the league’s four divisions advance to the playoffs.