Lenovo’s ThinkEdge Avatar, powered by DeepBrain software, wows F1® patrons

Robert Daigle, Director of Global AI Business, Lenovo

As an Official Partner of FORMULA 1®, Lenovo showcased some of our innovative technologies at the recent FORMULA 1 LENOVO UNITED STATES GRAND PRIX 2023 in Austin, Texas. For fortunate patrons in the Turn 19 Paddock Club Lounge at the Circuit of The Americas, we created the Lenovo ThinkEdge Avatar F1 experience – an innovative solution to revolutionize the Formula 1 fan experience. This proof-of-concept demo illustrated the “art of the possible” by leveraging Lenovo’s cutting-edge infrastructure and our ThinkEdge product line integrated with DeepBrain software.

ThinkEdge avatar display

The demo aimed to enhance fan engagement using our Lenovo ThinkEdge Avatar solution. This full-size kiosk avatar answered questions related to Formula 1, including facts, statistics, the Lenovo partnership, and queries about the F1 Paddock Club™ experience. Attendees interacted by asking questions or selecting options on the touch-enabled kiosk. The avatar responds naturally in conversation, providing instant answers and even graphical results when needed, like displaying the weekend schedule. The Lenovo ThinkEdge Avatar F1 experience enriched the race weekend, ensuring the attendees had all the information they needed at their fingertips.

What’s on the Menu?

People interacting with the ThinkEdge avatarOne of the key features of the “human-like” demo is its flexibility. For example, event management asked Lenovo to include the Paddock Club Daily Menus in the Lenovo ThinkEdge Avatar database. We quickly incorporated the daily menus onsite so the avatar could answer the question, “What’s on the menu today?” The avatar would respond, “We have grilled lobster salad or charred broccolini with goat cheese. We also offer a fillet of beef, grilled Chilean sea bass, homemade ricotta morel mezzaluna, and chicken tikka masala. For dessert, we have the best of dark and white chocolate.” This was just a quick modification on our side to demonstrate the capability, but for future events, we could go much deeper on a conversational and interactive menu experience. For example, we could add pictures of each option and nutritional and allergen information. So, someone could ask, “What vegetarian options are available?” or “Does the sea bass contain dairy?” We could take this even further by adding an option to order directly from the avatar so that the paddock has the meals ready for the patrons.

Delivering Smarter Technology with DeepBrain

We are proud of our partnerships with Independent Software Vendors (ISVs), which enable us to develop smarter, innovative technology solutions that cater to the custom needs of our customers. For example, Our ISV partnership with DeepBrain allows us to add custom avatars, ranging from ambassadors to global icons, enhancing the experience and improving the interaction for all our customers.

“DeepBrain is thrilled to partner with Lenovo to provide hyper-realistic virtual humans and enrich the Formula 1 fan experience. Engaging with sports fans is a natural fit for virtual humans as we have previously demonstrated with collaborations with professional golfer KJ Choi and Premier League superstar Son Heung Min,” stated Joseph Murphy, Business Development Manager at DeepBrain. The ThinkEdge Avatar solution enhanced the knowledge of Formula 1 fans on the weekend schedule,  venue information, Lenovo’s partnership with Formula 1, and even details on the kiss-activated trophy. The avatar runs locally on Lenovo ThinkEdge servers and is powered by DeepBrain software, providing Formula 1 fans with a unique, interactive, and memorable Formula 1 experience.

Proto Inc. provided the holographic display, which delivered a rich, immersive experience. However, one of the great features of the Deepbrain plus Lenovo solution is that it can be deployed on other form factors and even existing displays.

The digital avatar experience was well received over the weekend by fans, staff, and customers who attended Lenovo Tech World and saw this POC working in action. We’re excited to extend this effort to additional venues with more features in the future.


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