With the new Kings regime came a lot of ties to the Silicon Valley, which in turn, has created the potential for molding technology with sports in Sacramento.
At the forefront of that push is co-owner Andy Miller, who is in charge of technology for the Kings. With the demolition of Downtown Plaza over a month-and-half in, the Kings continue to delve into ways to link the new arena with innovative technology. One thing Miller, the former vice president of mobile advertising with Apple, says the team is looking into is "smart" lighting.
"Not just LED, but equipped with sensors to monitor traffic flow and environmental conditions, networked to provide data and control. It will give us a lot of data for easing congestion, safety and energy savings," Miller said.
The Kings also are looking into expanded Wi-Fi offerings that aren't even scheduled for limited release until 2016, according to Miller. The new arena is slated to open in October 2016. Other new technology that is being reviewed relates to sound, seat comfort, fabrics, traffic, parking, loyalty and beacon technology. The Kings will be testing some new technology in limited pockets of Sleep Train Arena this season in order to "work out the kinks for the new arena."
"We will test some new Wi-Fi technology. It won't be noticeable to most people, but it will be killer for the new stadium," Miller said. "Real innovative approach to get the most coverage possible and allow for a multimedia experience through the app at the seat."
Other testing could include multicasting to ensure instant replays at your seat and "smart" kiosks for ticket entry. Plus, new camera technology is going in now, Miller said.
The Kings app will also be completely redesigned. The goal is to launch a new version when the season begins. Miller and company wants it to be the first "state-ware" app in sports.
"The app will be location-aware and state-specific. Meaning if you are at the game you will get a different interface and different information like in-seat ordering, or traffic reports or game specials than if you were at home," Miller said. "The app will also shift information and interface as game time gets closer."
In-stadium replays and video angle control also is expected to be incorporated.
With all this said, fans ultimately want to know if the team is going to get better on the floor, and Miller thinks the Kings will exceed expectations this season.
"We have a good core. I really like [Darren] Collison. Our defense will improve. Boogie's experience with FIBA was invaluable and he is in ridiculous shape," Miller said. "Hopefully, Ben [McLemore] continues to mature, and [Nik] Stauskas is the real deal."
Miller is doing his best to help Kings general manager Pete D'Alessandro with the roster - he's working on a "proprietary analytics package for Pete and his team with loads of data inputs."