10 Amazing technologies for the 2014 World Cup

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A lot has changed since the last time the World Cup was held in Brazil in 1950. Back then it was just about the players and the field.

Experiencing the tournament used to mean either simply sitting in front of the television, or watching in the stadium. But nothing is quite so simple anymore. Leaps in technology have added a fancy new element to just about everything, and the World Cup is no different. Dubbed “the most hi-tech football event ever,” this year’s event is filled with perfectly-engineered balls, robotics, 3D-printing and scientifically-engineered uniforms, among other things.

Here is a list of our 10 favorite technologies that are sure to make this a World Cup to never forget. That is, until the next one 2018, when perhaps the players will also include a roster of robots!

Ilona’s 5

Patrick will tell you that I don’t really know anything about the World Cup because I like fashion, and because I am American. As you will see in my picks below, fashion actually plays a big part. I would also like to remind Mr. Naumann that the US women’s team is a force to be reckoned with. And perhaps everyone has forgotten one of the biggest upsets ever from 1950. Never count us out – we could upset again!

1. There’s no crying in football
Given how often Ronaldo likes to have a good cry, admittedly I thought that cryotherapy meant something entirely different. But apparently this freezing process cures a lot more than crying fits, making sure the Portuguese football star is always in tip-top shape, regardless of stress or injury.

2. 3D-printed everything
Nike’s new Rebento sports bag is just that – a sports bag. But it’s the world’s first 3D-printed sports bag, and that makes it cooler, and better.

3. Robots, drones and spies, oh my!
Security is one of the most important things when it comes to staging one of the world’s most extravagant events, and Brazil has reportedly spent a staggering $900 million to ensure a safe World Cup. But drones, too?

4. Scientific jerseys
Muscle support? Check. Sweat maintenance? Check. Psychological boost? Apparently, check! All whilst looking slick and vying for the World Cup? Checks across the board. But I am pretty sure that none of these scientifically-engineered kits will match any of Patrick’s man scarves.

5. So ballsy
Apparently, the Brazuca, the official ball of the World Cup, is the best ball ever made. It even has its own Twitter account (which probably has way more followers than Patrick’s account ever will).

Patrick’s 5

Let me start off by saying that when it comes to football, I believe Ilona has no clue what she’s talking about. First of all, she’s more into shoes and fashion than blood, sweat and tears (which is what this game is about, essentially). And secondly, she’s American.

1. The magic vanishing spray
I am sure there are days when Ilona would like to spray some of this on herself. However, only the foam itself vanishes, not the object you spray it on. But in my opinion this invention is sooo clever (yet simple), there’s bound to be other uses for it…

2. A cooling jacket
There are summer days when you sit in the office and wish you had an iced jacket to cool you down. Enter the AdiPower pre-cooling concept. Actually, I’m pretty hot most of the time, so I should stock up on this accessoire.

3. Robocop sunglasses
There’s a lot of controversy around World Cup security and the Brazilian police. But from a technology standpoint, the smart sunglasses they are testing this summer are pretty ingenious: they can detect 400 facial images per second and scan 46,000 facial points, compare them with a biometric database and help distinguish the bad guys from the good. That’s basically Robocop in a nutshell.

4. The mind-controlled robotic suit
If you plan on watching the opening game of the World Cup, tune in beforehand: An American Professor of Neuroscience/Neuroengineering will premiere a mind-controlled ‘exoskeleton’ suit, thanks to which a paralyzed patient will be able to walk again. Pretty awesome, if I may say so.

5. The Caxirola
It looks like a pair of brass knuckles glued on to an Easter bunny basket. If you want to spend $13.99 on the successor to the Vuvuzela, dubbed “the official World Cup noisemaker,” you can order one here. Luckily, I don’t need another noisemaker – I have Ilona (and she’s priceless).

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About the author

Patrick Naumann and Ilona Braverman

Hi, I'm Ilona, and I am the Newsroom Manager with the corporate communications team. And I’m Patrick, and I work with Ilona. In this blog, we give a ‘his and hers’ perspective on all things in and out of ABB. Sometimes, only Patrick is right, and sometimes Ilona is just wrong. But together, we're keeping it fresh.
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