There weren't many good examples of this in the wild as most play by play didn't have sound. I turned to listening to actual baseball broadcasts to get a feel for the most popular phrases being spoken. I also explored video games to better understand how they were using sound effects.
After we committed GameStream Radio I decided to test two different versions of sound with people that had written about wanting audio. A version with sound effects only and a version with Sound effects + Text to speech announcer.
Using iMovie I created the following prototypes:
- From testing the first prototype with people, the main theme around it was that it was a great compliment to the GameStream and it made it come to life. However we weren’t really accomplishing our goal of allowing people to follow the game without looking, they mentioned wanting someone announcing the plays.
- After seeing the tests going well, I talked to the engineers about what I was leaning towards. The lead engineer then did a quick prototype of what we could do as a proof of concept. To reduce dependencies we decided to use the native text to speech functionality on iOS and Android.