SwingVision Review (PickleBall): What I Think After Using it For 30 Days

If you haven’t heard of SwingVision yet, it’s a real-time automated scoring, stats, and line-calling mobile application for ball & racket sports. It’s main focus is tennis but recently (as of the end of 2023) they added in pickleball and have been rolling out functionality with the latest updates.

This review is written as of January 13, 2024 so we will update as new features are rolled out.

SwingVision Experience

So far I have been loving the SwingVision app, I purchased a deal they were running at the end of the year where you get the SwingStick for free if you purchase the Pro plan for a year. I only play pickleball and typically play about 3-4 times a week. I have recorded several hours of gameplay and have been blown away with the data I can view even though pickleball isn’t fully rolled out yet so this should only get better with time.

The setup is super easy and the compatibility with Apple watch allows me to control and start the recording from my watch. Eventually, you will be able to challenge line calls from the watch as well, which will be pretty cool. Right now you can review the video on your watch when hitting the “challenge” button, which is helpful but hard to tell on a watch screen whether the ball was in or out, especially if it’s on the far side of the court. So because of that I really don’t even bother using that feature.

Starting and stopping is pretty easy to do in between games but if you sit out a game this is where things get tricky. You would end the session for the game you just played and then I believe the app goes to sleep because when I have sat out a game and then come back in 10-15 minutes later, I find that I have to take the phone down off the fence and hit start from the app again. Not a huge deal but if you’re playing with people that are impatient this might annoy them. The group that I play with all love the idea and love when I send them footage so they don’t mind waiting a few minutes.

Compatibility

Right now the app only works on iPhones (iPhone 12 and above I believe) but this isn’t due to a lack of resources it’s actually due to the shortcomings of the technology in Android phones.

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At the beginning of 2023, the feedback from the team at SwingVision said:

“We’ve been working closely with the Android and ML teams at Google for the past few months.

We initially saw promising A.I. performance on Pixel 7 Pro, but after building a more complete demo, the phone overheats in just 15 minutes of recording at 60fps while running our A.I. 

Another update: Samsung S22/S23 do not support 60fps recording for third party apps.

Given this is the standard we require for our A.I. to provide accurate shot tracking, automated scoring and line calling, this now rules out S23 as well.

At this time, it is pretty much guaranteed that Android will be delayed another year”

The team further states:

“We will invest the resources when real-time processing is available. The product feedback across thousands of customers on iOS very clearly shows that post-recording processing is a significantly worse experience, by a lot. It is eventually something we will phase out completely, long term.”

SwingVision vs GoPro or Other Camera solution

When I was wanting to record some of my games I was actually looking at GoPro and some of the other action cameras like the Insta360. While those cameras are durable and portable, they can also be a pain when it comes to sorting through the footage. So I have put together a list of pros and cons when considering the two options

Pros

  • Runs from your phone so you don’t need to purchase any additional equipment, initially I was going to buy a GoPro to record games but this isn’t necessary
  • You can share footage with friends easily, right from the app.
  • You can quickly edit videos right from the app, tagging clips you want to include, then export just those clips into a video either optimized for web or social media (reels) which is really cool
  • AI processes the footage in real time, something you really couldn’t do with an action camera
  • The footage is shortened in the app, so the AI cuts out all of the talking and dead time in between points, this way when you watch it back you just to the serve that started the point each time
  • The app automatically creates categories for each video like Longest Rallies, Most Tiring Rallies, Rallies Above 5 Shots, Your Serves… and more.
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Cons

  • Ongoing subscription
  • Phone is not accessible during play
  • Keeping the phone fully charged is more difficult as you’re using it all day
  • Overheating potential if in direct sunlight although you can get a SwingStick from SwingVision that has a screen blocker to prevent this if you’re in direct sunlight

Conclusion

The app is fantastic and I am glad I never bought another camera because this way of doing this is far better than you could ever achieve with an action camera. Dealing with the footage, transferring it to your computer, editing and sending to friends would take hours!!

This is so smooth and easy to handle, the video is stored in the cloud so you can remove the footage from your device and not have to worry about taking up space. All of this is well worth the small subscription fee as long as you’re going to use it at least a couple of times a month.

Whats great is that as new features are launched, you can reprocess all of your videos and have them reanalyzed by the AI so all of of the new features will be applied to your old videos. That to me makes it worth jumping on board and not waiting until pickleball functionality is full fleshed out

The SwingVision company was founded in 2019 and is headquartered in San Mateo, California, United States.

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