Ben and Michael had the idea for Spalk when they started doing their own audio-only commentary on their favourite sports games. They soon realised their audio was minutes out of time with the live game video on TV. This was frustrating for their viewers who were trying to follow Ben & Michael's commentary, while watching the live game video.
Spalk was part of the first Vodafone Xone accelerator, then joined the Icehouse incubator with funding from Ice Angels. They used the funding and support to build their platform to synchronise the user's audio with the live broadcast game video. Through several iterations, Spalk developed a cutting-edge mechanism to synchronise the two pieces of media from alternate sources, giving sports fans the chance to hear alternative commentary, or even create their own. Before long, Spalk had interest from broadcasters, including Maori Television, eager to integrate the Spalk Live-Sync technology into their broadcast options.
In January 2017, Spalk teamed up with Callaghan Innovation to attend the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Held over four days, Spalk’s presence helped them meet with dozens of potential partners, customers and distributors. Household names like AT&T and Alibaba Entertainment were just two of the firms Spalk was able to engage with over the course of the trade show, thanks to Callaghan Innovation.
Following CES, Callaghan Innovation has been a critical part of Spalk's continual R&D program. Callaghan Innovation supports Spalk through a Project Grant, which funds ongoing R&D around mobile commentary implementation, automated commentary generation and periphery commentary tools. On top of that, Spalk was able to work with The Icehouse to get investment ready and support the early commercialisation of the technology.