Polo Ralph Lauren: shopping 3.0

As if you don’t already have enough widgets on your iPhones (I’ve never seen so many phones shaken violently in my life!), Polo Ralph Lauren adds to the mix by introducing the first luxury American mobile commerce website.

Customers can download software to their camera phones, which in turn will scan codes displayed in print ads, mailings, and instore displays. The codes will direct the users to a phone-friendly version of the PRL site, where they can watch video, read web articles, and shop for their cable knit sweaters and Big Pony polos from anywhere they can get reception (at Arthur Ashe Stadium, waiting for the ATP trainer to finish taping up a player’s leg?).

The launch is going to coincide with the apparel maker’s sponsorship of the US Open, which begins at the end of this month.

As with most things mobile, the US is way behind trendy Asia and even old-fashioned Europe when it comes to customers adopting some of the latest and greatest mobile technology. In Japan, it is quite common for people to buy tickets and vending machine products using their mobile phones. But hey, later is better than never.

(RL via Red Herring)

forget about fashion: let's talk food and tech for a sec

Lest you think that I have nothing else on my mind besides tennis whites (that’s partially true), let’s turn to other Wimbledon-related topics:

GRUB: Elsanta, the “Pete Sampras” of strawberries, is the kind served in the world-famous Wimbledon dish. (On The Baseline)

TECH: MYiOTA announced that it will offer a service to mobile phone customers which will offer point-by-point updates at Wimbledon. I wonder how this will fare compared to what Alcatel did for the Mexican Open earlier this year. (via Pocket-lint)

TECH, pt. 2: The two show courts getting HawkEye technology will be rid of Cyclops. No longer will there be those annoying beeps that call out let cords. (via The Ocala Star-Banner)

RELATED POSTS
>> TSF’s wimbledon coverage

short balls thursday

Nadal’s made it: A four-page spread in this month’s GQ followed by his very own article in The Onion. To Americans, Rafa Nadal is no longer just that “tennis player with the massive biceps”.

Guillermo Coria sues over suspension: Another esteemed member of the Argentina Drug Suspension Corral is back in the news. Guillermo Coria is accusing Universal Nutrition of contaminating its multivitamin, which Coria was taking, with steroids. Coria is suing for $10 million in lost prize and endorsement money. (via Sporting News)

She’s a tall drink of Russian…water?: Smirnoff’s new Smirnoff Source comes in what looks like a water bottle, but it’s still 3.5 percent alcohol by volume — a godsend to those underage celebrities, I’m sure. Anyway, Anna Kournikova heads to NYC tonight to host a fundraiser sponsored by this new drink to benefit the Nature Conservancy. (via Business Wire)

Dubai, still: Along with acquiring the season-ending Outback Champions Series event, Dubai might also add Barneys New York to its asset portfolio. (via Tennis Served Fresh and NYT)

NYC tennis, good idea: This event will coincide with Wimbledon. (There are two i’s — get it?)

NYC tennis, bad idea: Can someone explain to me how this relates to the sport at all?

If it ain’t broke, then make it better: Line-calling technology Hawkeye makes its ATP debut in the UK. This time, each player gets three line challenges, plus the extra one if the set goes to a tiebreak. (via BBC)

If the British want champions, the LTA should stop sponsoring them: Uhh, what? (via the Guardian)

HEAD's browser-based tennis game

Pong the Pros - HEAD

As if there weren’t enough browser-based Pong-like tennis games out there, the guys over at HEAD have their own version called Pong the Pro. I can’t quite get it to work on my computer here, so leave a comment and tell me if it’s good. I’ll play around with when I get a chance.

RELATED POSTS
>> tardis tennis
>> video games strengthen the tennis brand
>> between now and march…

short balls – spring cleaning: sharapova, thai open, shoe phone

Cleaning out my inbox today….

Night Tennis: the new Twitter? The Nation reports that the Thailand Open is pulling out all the stops this season. They’ve got Miss Thailand World contestants as ballgirls, they’ve created a new logo, and will be running an extensive marketing campaign (USTA: take some notes) including interactive roadshows, the Thailand Open junior challenge, and (don’t write this down) Tennis in the Dark. WHY IS EVERYONE ABOUT THIS ALL OF A SUDDEN? if I read about one more tennis tournament adding Night Tennis to their schedule, I will throw up. I’m betting this will go the way of the round robin very soon.

Tennis Phone: They’ve already made too many tennis puns about this phone over at Red Ferret, so I’ll leave you to enjoy the short entry for yourself.

Sharapova look-alike contest - Indian Wells

Sharapova clone contest: Does anyone else besides me think that NONE of the women they chose to be Maria Sharapova look-alikes for Canon’s Indian Wells campaign *actually* look like her? They’re all brokefaced. Life-size cardboard cutouts would have been the way to go. (via the San Diego Union-Tribune)

night tennis gear

table tennis shirt - thinkgeek

The organizers of next week’s Night Tennis Miami should consider selling these shirts at the merch table.

ThinkGeek had elaborate dreams for this; it started out with a flatscreen, an xbox, and a battery pack, but they couldn’t get it to work: “The test subjects kept falling over, no one liked the car battery power supply duct taped to their leg and don’t even get us started on the price.”

So there’s the consumer-friendly version.

via Random Good Stuff

short balls: whoriskey, top spin 2

It’s okay, some of my best friends are whores: Here’s an unfortunately named — but I’m sure lovely — woman starting out her freshman year (and playing tennis) at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. (via the Knoxville News Sentinel)

Will it simulate real injuries, too?: Aspyr Media will release a PC version of Top Spin 2 (previously only available on Xbox 360, Nintendo DS and Gameboy Advance) on March 12: “…Top Spin 2 serves up 24 top-ranked athletes (Roger Federer, Maria Sharapova, and more), a wide variety of events including all four Grand Slam tournaments, a multi-season career, and a set of new risk and advanced shots.” (via GameZone)

tardis tennis

Tardis Tennis - BBC Sport

If night tennis is just plain boring, neither the wii nor Smash Court are cutting it, and you’re done orchestrating the game between Roddick and Pong, perhaps you’d like your balls served with a side of time travel. The BBC Sport website provides an online tennis game called Tardis Tennis, based on the time machine/spacecraft from the Dr. Who series.

You can play as Queen Victoria (“slow, big hitter”), John Lennon (good all round), or Shakespeare (“fast but weak”).

I couldn’t quite figure it out during a work break, but I’ll come back to it later. If you’ve played it, tell me what you think.

video games + strengthen the tennis brand

Smash Court Tennis 3

I recently lost a few friends to the role playing behemoth Warcraft. I never really got into videogames, except for the endless hours I spent playing Tetris Attack, and of course Super Tennis. With my newfound free time, I figured I’d poke around and see what’s up with videogame tennis these days. It’s nothing you don’t already know, but it’s new(s) to me. [Read more…]