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2023 FIBA World Cup

PH’s first digital human ‘Pearl’ to serve fans during FIBA WC

PLDT Inc., Smart, MediaQuest Holdings, Cignal TV, and NTT DATA have jointly announced their collaboration to provide an innovative experience for basketball fans both in the Philippines and abroad, who will be attending the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 in Manila.

This collaboration introduces the debut of Pearl, the country’s inaugural “Digital Human.”

Anticipating nearly half a million sports enthusiasts to converge at the FIBA tournament, scheduled from August 25 to September 10, Pearl, a conversational Artificial Intelligence (AI) Avatar powered by Digital Human technology, will be available for interaction.

Pearl will be stationed at designated kiosks within the Smart Araneta Coliseum and the Mall of Asia Arena.

Alfredo S. Panlilio, President and CEO of PLDT and Smart Communications, and also President of Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP), remarked, “We are immensely proud to offer these next-generation technologies to Filipino basketball enthusiasts, enhancing our commitment to innovative, customer-centric digital solutions. The interactions between fans and Pearl will guide our ongoing efforts to elevate the live stadium experience for future events.”

Jane J. Basas, President and CEO of Mediaquest and Cignal, emphasized, “Beyond elevating the enjoyment of FIBA games, Pearl offers a glimpse into the burgeoning digital future of today. Our enthusiasm for introducing Smart Solutions to Philippine sports is driven by the desire to elevate fan experiences to unprecedented heights.”

2023-FIBA-WC-Al-Panlilio-x-Noriyuki-Kaya-x-Jane-Basas-with-Pearl PH's first digital human 'Pearl' to serve fans during FIBA WC 2023 FIBA World Cup Basketball News  - philippine sports newsEmpowered with ChatGPT technology, visual and auditory sensors, Pearl adeptly engages with sports aficionados in both English and Filipino. She offers responses to FIBA-related queries, such as directions to seating arrangements, snack recommendations, and tourist activities in Manila.

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Pearl, an unprecedented concept in Asia, stands as a pinnacle in Digital Human technology. She amalgamates speech recognition, machine learning, natural language processing, and conversational AI to establish meaningful connections with individuals.

With realistic facial expressions, Pearl’s conversations are notably human-like. Game enthusiasts seeking real-time updates can simply inquire with Pearl, who promptly provides information about game outcomes, statistics, leaderboards, and upcoming matches.

The development of Digital Human technology rests with NTT DATA, alongside NTT Ltd. and NTT DATA Business Solutions, as part of their drive to propagate Smart Solutions for an international audience.

These Smart Solutions blend creative communication with cutting-edge advancements in Internet of Things (IoT) technology and AI, culminating in a distinct experience for sports fans. The NTT Group has previously introduced Smart Solutions through diverse sporting events such as the Tour de France, IndyCar Series, and Major League Baseball.

NTT DATA Executive Vice President Noriyuki Kaya stated, “The NTT Group has long advocated for Smart Solutions in sports, and we are excited to introduce this concept to the Philippines through this global event. We eagerly anticipate further collaborations with the PLDT Group and the Mediaquest Group as we continue to drive innovation.”

In strategic partnership with Smart and PLDT, facilitated by PLDT Enterprise, Mediaquest, Cignal, and the NTT Group, Smart Solutions now make their debut in the Philippines, perfectly timed for the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023.

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