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Volume 20 No. 42
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More than chips: IOC deal will show breadth of Intel's tech wares

Intel will pay about $400 million in cash and in-kind value through 2024 for the right to show off a hodgepodge of its advanced technical capabilities at the Olympics.

The chipmaker’s deal with the International Olympic Committee, officially announced last week, is focused on its 5G mobile connection platforms; its virtual reality, 3-D, 360-degree video platforms; artificial intelligence; and drones. But Intel’s official category designation was left intentionally vague, with both Intel and Olympic officials emphasizing a more general vision of enhancing the viewer experience and delivering a younger audience for the Games.

“This is really going to allow people who would never have had a chance to get to Korea and see the Olympics to actually feel like they’re there,” said Intel CEO Brian Krzanich.

Intel has pledged to help the Olympics’ in-house broadcasting arm produce live and on-demand virtual reality coverage for 16 events in Pyeongchang next year, and will deploy drones to capture footage of the Games. It also will showcase 5G mobile connectivity on-site at the Olympics, which will help deliver the enhancements to mobile devices.

Intel has yet to decide other aspects of its Olympic strategy, including how it will use athletes in its campaign or the size of its on-the-ground hospitality program or activations in South Korea.