Modified Microsoft Surface Pro 2 tablets to replace Polaroid cameras on NFL sidelines this year

Modified Microsoft Surface Pro 2 tablets to replace Polaroid cameras on NFL sidelines this year
Remember those images you would see during an NFL telecast, showing coaches and players going through a folder of Polaroid pictures? Those photographs were taken from the sidelines, and from the coaches' box, to help find a weakness in the opponent's offensive or defensive formations. But starting with today's Hall of Fame Game between the New York Giants and Buffalo Bills, each team will use a new technology that will give both teams color, digital pictures, delivered to the coaches faster than before.

The new technology happens to be a fleet of Microsoft Surface Pro 2 tablets, modified for the job. The slates will feature a thick blue case to help them survive a full NFL season, and are the property of the NFL, not the individual teams. Certain restrictions have been put in place regarding the storage of the devices, to prevent cheating (hear that, Bill Belichick?).

Microsoft and the NFL entered into a $400 million deal that made the slate the official sideline computer of the league. Besides the thick blue case, other modifications include the disabling of the camera, limited connectivity to a wireless network that runs inside each stadium, and a waterproof screen. There is only one program that each tablet will run. That program, called the Sideline Viewing System, will allow coaches to view digital game photographs.

The tablets are locked up in temperature controlled carts, before being handed out to each team before kickoff. 13 tablets will be on each sideline during the game, while another dozen will be deployed in the coaches' box. During the course of the upcoming season, we are sure to get some televised shots of the tablets doing their thing on the sideline.

source: Bloomberg

Related phones

Surface Pro 2
  • Display 10.6 inches
    1080 x 1920 pixels
  • Camera (Single camera)
  • Hardware Intel Core i5, 8GB RAM
  • Storage 64GB, microSDXC
  • OS Windows 8.1 Pro



10. 7thspaceman

Posts: 1597; Member since: Feb 14, 2011

Microsoft tablets are full PC's shaped like a tablet. People have found that they are powerful enough to be more versatile than other tablets in the market place. I hope Microsoft puts a Lumia pure camera on a model of the Surface line of tablets. The surface Pro 4 tablets with the fan less Intel Broadwell CPU's will be the dream tablet to have. they may be thinner and will have more Battery life than the surface pro 3 has. no longer can Apple and Sony boast they have thin Tablets. Microsoft has finally got products to Rival theirs. One Problem though is their COST_COST_ COST. Microsoft has to get a sub 500 dollar full Windows x86-8.1 OS Tablet on the market that low income people/People on a budget can afford to buy

7. Drsarcastic

Posts: 136; Member since: Jul 23, 2014

Forgive me for being a noob but... what did Bill Belichick do?

9. tedkord

Posts: 17544; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

Win a bunch of Super Bowls. Really pisses of the fans of other teams. ;)

6. engineer-1701d unregistered

pap nice pun lol


Posts: 2315; Member since: Jul 30, 2011

Polaroid!!!!? That's like using an iPhone to pin point said weaknesses; no wonder they're all losing, horribly iMight add. This will be a HUGE improvement for the NFL.

2. Neo_Huang

Posts: 1067; Member since: Dec 06, 2013

Why not Surface Pro 3?

3. CyberFalcon

Posts: 223; Member since: Apr 17, 2014

Y bring a lion to do a cat's job....

5. engineer-1701d unregistered

they needed away to get rid of the pro 2 stock without losing alot of money this way they get money contract and free ad space.

8. elitewolverine

Posts: 5192; Member since: Oct 28, 2013

Because it is running one app, most are disabled, MS makes the tablets so no need for a 3rd party. As well, they will be ready this season, dozens and dozens of them. They are built to different standards with the case and water proof. I mean, its not like we have a 'product canon' where we can get into the canon and blast off to 'product land' where all things are made within days and we just pick them from little 'product trees' with no regard to real world.

1. NokiaFTW

Posts: 2072; Member since: Oct 24, 2012

This is great news for MS. The more they push and advertise/market their products like that, the more the sales and profits. They should do this with WP and Windows 8 also.

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