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Spark 5G Boat Builder

Spark had the opportunity to demonstrate to New Zealanders how 5G could make a difference to how Team New Zealand defended the 36th America’s Cup. They started by building the team their own 5G network to give them a technological advantage and excel their boat’s performance to victory. 

Working closely with Dan Bernasconi, and the Emirates Team New Zealand design team, we created a real-time interactive experience where visitors can design their own high-performance AC75. This was done to enable access and understanding of 5G network benefits to sailing technology and racing.

Using a tablet, visitors can change the hull, rudder, sail, foil, crew position plus personalise it with their own custom paint job to create the best boat for the day's wind conditions. 

At the end of the process, they could then see whether their design helped or hindered their AC75’s performance while everyone's final designed boat was presented throughout the day on the shared big screen.




Auckland, New Zealand

Buildmedia's Spark 5G Boat Builder project has been chosen as a finalist in the Best Awards.

The configurator was set up to highlight Spark’s 5G network capabilities & each tablet accessed its own cloud computer, streaming high-quality ray-traced graphics.

Children especially enjoyed the experience as there was a real sense of ownership and pride upon seeing their personalised boat sailing in the harbour.

The performance of each boat was based on Emirates Team New Zealand's design concepts & changes to each part of the AC75 affected the performance in some way.

Overall the system contained hundreds of thousands of potential boat design combinations.

High-end gaming graphics on a mobile device is not possible due to the large amount of computing power required so we needed to work closely with Spark to find a balance between visual fidelity and bandwidth of the network.

Presenting sailing technology in ‘plain speak’ to a five-year-old, speaks to the success of this experience.

At the end of the experience, each design was uploaded to a microsite where visitors can socially share their design.

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