Nestled between the 12th and 16th holes of Austin Country Club, fans can find an assortment of attractions to escape the crowds – and heat – during the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play.
They can indulge on some of the local fine dining options that Austin has to offer – such as Amy’s Ice Cream or Torchy’s Tacos. Or they can buy the latest gear from the merchandise tent.
But you can also hit exploding golf balls from a floating platform at flashing neon targets, or putt across the floor of an ocean. Seriously.
With a multitude of innovative ideas, Dell Technologies has engineered an assortment of interactive activities, “creating a one-of-a-kind golfing experience.”
The Dell Technologies Fan Experience tent contains fun for fans of all ages. One activity is a mixed reality golfing game that allows participants to strap on virtual reality goggles and take aim at targets.
This TopGolf-esque activity can be viewed by anyone in the tent through 3-D goggles, and fans can compete against others via an interactive leaderboard. Fans were enthused by the game that allowed them to take aim like the pros.
“I liked that Dell put the time and money into creating their own custom software for golf,” said Joshua Dunham, a Microsoft employee with extensive experience with virtual reality. “This was fun because it is more futuristic. It was different – more challenging.”
But the fun isn’t limited to those who live for ball-striking – there is an interactive putting game as well. The game gives fans three tries to hole a 25-foot putt. But there’s a catch.
The terrain of the putt transforms as the ball rolls across it.
The LED technology tracks the ball and changes the scenery of the putt in real time. The putt may start rolling through a desert but end on the bottom of the ocean floor.
There is also a charity wall and accompanying interactive map of various organizations around Austin that Dell Technologies works with. The wall allows fans to interact with the map and get information about the organizations with facts and videos.
And for the fans who don’t want to test their golfing acumen, there is a 360-degree photo booth. The booth takes photos of fans from all sides. Then it overlays them in front of a backdrop of the beautiful Pennybacker Bridge and the hills of west Austin.
The photos can be shared on social media with the hashtag #DellMatchPlay.
“It’s a good way to showcase all the products and where they’re going so you don’t think of them as a PC company anymore.” said Bobby Billman, a fan who was on his second visit of the week to the tent.
The tent opens daily 30 minutes before the first tee times and runs throughout the day. It is a great way to experience all of the innovations that Dell Technologies has in the works. The free air conditioning is a nice plus as too.