Sports App Puts Amateur Athletes in Spotlight

The app SportXast is designed to provide athletes and fans an easy, affordable way to capture and produce real time highlight reels from any sporting event.

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SportXast, a New Mexico-made app allows users to produce a customized sports video highlight channel on its mobile platform.

The company provides amateur athletes a free tool they can use to impress recruiters who are seeking highlight reels. Sports fans may use the app to grab and share clips of games in real time. Sports teams, meanwhile, can use the app to assemble and display game highlights online.

This wasn’t always the vision of the app’s inventors.

The technology used by SportXast was originally developed for Los Alamos National Labs in order to identify objects on video through computer vision.

In March 2013 — , Molly Cernicek, who would soon become the CEO of SportXast — , and her team jump started the development of SportXast by winning the Santa Fe Startup Weekend. The Santa Fe Startup Weekend is a 54-hour event that brings together developers and entrepreneurs to pitch ideas and build real products.

In the summer of 2014, the SportXast app launched. The vision for the app originally was to provide sports fans a tool that could easily record and share instant highlights from any sporting event. At the time, it was thought perhaps that local media outlets might pay for access to a large database of local sports highlights, shot by amateur users of the app.

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In February of 2015, after feedback from users, SportXast added a new feature to the app: the aAthlete and cCoaching cChannels, a recruiting element for athletes everywhere. The aAthlete cChannels provide athletes and coaches a database of video highlights to update, upload and watch what a player is all about. This feature allows athletes, coaches and parents to forgo the editing process of putting together a highlight reel.

“People like to see sports in real time,” Cernicek said. “A lot of games are streamed, but there is not a timely way to edit out the best plays of the game and to share them with fans on social media. SportXast makes it easy to capture, share and organize players’ best plays from the sideline.”

What gives SportXast an advantage over its competitors is the instant replay button. When the SportXast button is tapped in the capture mode, it records the previous eight seconds of action, successfully eliminating the process of searching and editing through hours of tape for that one game-changing highlight. Once a big play happens, the user simply taps the instant replay button in the top right hand corner of the screen which will then buffer whatever was captured back eight seconds providing the user with an eight second highlight clip that can be shared instantly to social media or a specific player’s Athlete Channel.

The company is targeting youth sports clubs, high school athletes and semi-pro teams interested in keeping their fans connected to every game.

This summer, the Albuquerque Sol FC soccer team used the app, team and athlete highlight channels. It was the only club that posted video highlights during its games in their 64-team league.

“We think all sports teams need that one tool that sets them apart from the rest. This mindset is what really enticed us about SportXast,” said general manager of the Albuquerque Sol, Larry Espinoza.

“It became valuable for us. We didn’t have to break down hours of game tape for that perfect highlight clip anymore.”  Espinoza and the Albuquerque Sol plan to continue using the app for the team’s upcoming season.

“SportXast is an easy, affordable way to promote local sports,” Cernicek said.

Team highlight channels make it easy for fans to keep up with the best plays of local teams; while athlete highlight channels give athletes a platform to showcase their talents game after game.

The SportXast app is free and available on the Apple Store and Google Play. To sign up for an Athlete or Team Channel, visit the itunes app store here.

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