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Vokkero & the FFF: looking back on 3 generations of products

5 questions to... Bertrand Million, Deputy Chief Executive Officer
Vokkero & the FFF: looking back on 3 generations of products

Bertrand, if I say 2005, what does this date represent for Vokkero?

2005 was the year we won the French Football Federation's invitation to tender to equip, for the very first time, the Ligue 1 and Ligue 2 field referees with a radio communication system.

 

Following this victory, what developments has this product undergone?

Our goal was to provide a robust, easy-to-use product with a noise filter and integrated communications encryption. Its name at the time was ARF37. It was individually charged and configured with an LED interface.

4 years later, in 2009, we created a new product, called Evo3. We totally changed the mechanics of the product by integrating an interface with an LCD screen, more modern and more intuitive to use.

Finally, in 2013 we proposed the Squadra solution. The requirements of the referees had evolved as well as the technologies. That's why Squadra had centralised configuration and charging via a touch screen, which is much easier and faster for referees.

 

In general, what have been the major changes made to the generations of products?

Everything has progressed over the past 14 years, the number of users, which has increased from 4 to 8 and the battery life which we have doubled, bringing it to 12 hours. We have increased the number of frequency channels from 1 to 3. The size was reduced by more than 5 cm and the weight was halved.

We make continuous improvements to our products based on a number of criteria such as audio quality and reliability against interference to keep pace with the needs of the market and the development of radio technologies.

 

What do you think makes the difference when choosing Vokkero?

We were the first to be established in this market of refereeing in professional football. We know better than anyone the requirements and constraints of referees and the environment in which they operate. Our R&D team, entirely based in our headquarters in Crolles (38), has been able to develop our technology and in particular our patented noise filter over the years to be able to best satisfy these requirements in the face of such constraints. We see the extremely positive feedback we have received from the entire profession as a real measure of success and satisfaction.

 

We're in 2019 now, does Vokkero plan to continue its innovations?

Of course! In fact, we have already released a new generation of our Guardian product that we have adapted to the refereeing world. It meets a primary criterion of the VAR: audio comfort. Thanks to Guardian, we position ourselves above all other products in this market because we are the only ones to offer a system that combines HD audio quality with noise filtering, which seems to us to be a must have in stadiums, where the noise level may exceed 100 dB. The referees' feedback exceeded our expectations!

Obviously, we won't be stopping there. Our marketing and technical teams are constantly working to bring improvements and new developments that meet user expectations. I am thinking in particular of remote maintenance in operational condition or meeting broadcasting requirements sufficiently. All this, of course, while preserving Vokkero's DNA: an easy and fast product that deploys advanced technologies.

 

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