Nike NBA Connected Jersey

Tap in to the game.

For decades, Nike has defined the look, feel, and style of basketball both on and off the court. From iconic silhouettes and game-changing innovations to dynamic personalities and raw storytelling, everything Nike Basketball does helps to fuel a worldwide culture of athletes and fans who live and breathe hoops. Nike virtually created the basketball apparel category, and now they’re driving it forward with a new generation of fan-focused, style-obsessed, technically-innovative experiences. 

Three years ago Nike heralded the next era in hoop culture with the announcement they were re-claiming the contract as the exclusive on-court apparel provider for the NBA. The challenge was to balance meaningful innovation with a fan-focused experience that would draw athletes, die-hard fans, and sneakerheads closer than ever to the sport they love. We partnered with Nike Basketball’s internal team to help pioneer the digital experience, product messaging, and retail launch strategy for their first product, the Nike NBA Connected Jersey. 

The Nike NBA Connected Jersey goes beyond anything in the apparel space today, leveraging Nike’s proprietary NikeConnect technology to deliver tailored content directly to fans based on location and team affiliation. We helped to pioneer a new method of experiencing NikeConnect using the embedded NFC chip with a custom app prototype and video player. The new experience gives fans a fresh experience with exclusive NBA content, VIP experiences, and behind the scenes footage whether in the store or in the stadium.

Entry Window
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Tailored for you.

Most often, wearable tech is built to track and aggregate wearers’ data. The Nike NBA Connected Jersey flipped the coin; it would bring fans tailored NBA content, taking them beyond the one-stroke telecast on gameday. To introduce this new wearable experience, we partnered with Nike Global Basketball to create, prototype, and prove out a complete digital and physical system in the Nike Retail Lab, then help to bring the experience to the world.

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Fan first.

With the continued expansion in live-streaming, social media, and niche coverage of sports, fans across the globe are demanding more in-depth and tailored content that goes far beyond the final buzzer. We needed to create a fan-first experience that could deliver immersive content seamlessly from anywhere in the world, while introducing a new product experience at retail to clearly and concisely tell the story of NikeConnect, its benefits to consumers, and how fans could download and engage with the technology.

Digital Experience

All systems go.

Prototyping in the Nike Retail Lab is far different than activating in a retail environment, and we had to make sure our experience could work on a wide range of devices across various data speeds connected to global network providers. This required a custom solution, so we built a web-based video player that launched through NFC and adapted to the local connection speed to deliver the best possible combination of load time and video quality.

“Our goal was to create a seamless user experience driven by technology. Factoring in the variables of a retail environment. The experience needed to quickly load the highest quality video to help drive consumer engagement.”

— Nathan Searles / Technical Director

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Taking it to the Big Apple.

We took our learnings from the retail lab and integrated the technology into the build-outs for Nike’s two premier brand experience locations, NikeSOHO and NikeTown New York. To support the NikeConnect digital content and motion graphics, we tapped into the visual language of NYC street culture with a system of pipe and clamp scaffolding to support digital screens and large format photography of Nike athletes and fashion influencers. Special thank you to Mo Dauod for capturing content for the video production.

“To match the larger than life athlete entrance, we designed an initiative zone that allowed multiple fans to get up close and personal with their favorite teams and gain never before seen access to their favorite players.”

— Aaron Carlsson / Creative Director – Brand

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Visual System

Dial it up.

Following the initial launch of the product, it became clear that a new, long-term vision and strategy was needed to support the connected jersey story as a 365 product across the retail landscape, in Nike stores, NBA team stores, and partner doors. We worked to design a kit of parts that would complete the storytelling experience after in-store and online purchases.

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Premium product, premium presentation.

To hero the Nike Connected Jersey the new hanger design had to present the product as a balance between an authentic game-worn jersey and a perfect addition to an average fan’s kit. It also had to proudly carry the new Nike X NBA logo in a way that celebrated and cemented the partnership. The functional simplicity of an arc is in homage to the graphic courtline element, while the laser-engraved branding references the deep and lasting commitment of Nike Basketball over the decades.

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Nike Global Basketball entrusted us to introduce their next era of connected gear to the world as a proving ground for expanding the experience across categories and product applications. The consumer experience for the Nike NBA Connected NBA Jersey established a framework for a custom, ownable solution that bridged the gap between tech and experience, delivering seamless content directly to fans across the globe.

Basketball is rapidly becoming the next global sport, and the Nike NBA Connected Jerseys is giving fans more access than ever before across multiple languages, in Nike stores around the globe, and developing a deeper connection with the athletes and teams fans know and love. We’re excited to see the work come to life in 2018, and look forward to pushing the future of connected wearables with Nike.

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