If you watched any of the World Cup games over the past few weeks, you would have been hard pushed not to have noticed that Philips was a major sponsor. Besides the billboards all around the pitch, it was hard to avoid the Philips logo beneath the scoreboard that would appear at random points throughout the game.
But Philips’ biggest contribution to the tournament was the “Fan Fests” that were located in all the host cities around Germany. You know what I mean, those massive gatherings of fans who couldn’t get tickets to the games, watching huge screens – of course we only saw these locations whenever Gary Lineker wanted to highlight the “reaction of the fans” in the post match analysis.
Not only did Philips supply the massive screens for these outdoor gatherings, but the company integrated its much praised Ambilight system into them. So, at the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, Philips installed a screen measuring 77m2, complete with full surround Ambilight!
Despite actually watching a couple of the matches live, I can’t help but wonder what the images looked like on a screen that big. Could Ronaldo’s constant diving have looked more ridiculous? Could Sven have looked more clueless? Could Crouch have even fitted on the screen without the top of his head being cut off? And most important of all, could an Italian lip reader have spotted what Materazzi really said to Zidane?
But the question I really want answered is, where is that screen now? If it’s looking for a home now that the tournament is over I’d be happy to oblige. I could probably mount it at the end of my garden and watch the footie out of my bedroom window. Couple that with wireless networking and Internet shopping, and I’d never have to get out of bed again!