As reported by the Wall Street Journal, Apple and Major League Baseball has inked a multi-year agreement that will bring the tech giant’s 12.9-inch iPad Pro tablets to MLB dugouts this season. The objective here is to make full use of the iPad Pro in providing data, stats, metrics, and even player profiles to coaches and members of their coaching staff around the league.
As explained by Rob Manfred, the MLB Commissioner, the league’s agreement with Apple coincides nicely with the lifting of a ban on smartphones, tablets, and even laptops in team dugouts. For some, it is a sort of victory especially for those clamoring to take full advantage of recent advances in mobile technology in order for a baseball to gain an edge over its opponent.
Before, players had to run back to the locker room to be able to review video footage of earlier matches showing pitchers and hitters. But soon, that kind of information will be made available directly in the hands of coaches and even the players themselves.
The 12.9-inch iPad Pro tablets issues to coaching staffs will come with rugged cases displaying the league’s emblem. The software has been customized via an app called MLB Dugout, which was developed by the league’s Advanced Media division, with a little help of course from Apple’s crew.
The information available on the iPad Pro tablets will be proprietary to each MLB team, as opposed to retrieving data from a league-wide database. When launched, the MLB Dugout app’s information will be preloaded prior to each match. However in the future, the league is looking to have that information more consistent with real time data. Last year, the league has already started testing the app during the postseason.