OMEGA – Official Timekeeper Of The Olympics

The 2016 Summer Olympics In Rio De Janeiro

Rio 2016

Tomorrow is a big day for Rio De Janeiro – the Olympic Summer Games are going to start. The world is totally excited about this upcoming sports event and trust me, I’m going to have my TV on a bit more often than usual. Athletes from all over the world have prepared for weeks, months and years to compete at the Olympic games. An Olympic medal is the ultimate dream of every sportsman. A life full of devotion and dedication can be changed to gold within a heartbeat. OMEGA is delivering the service to measure a very tiny difference of success or failure – the instrument that measures this small but very important detail. Imagine, timekeeping requires 450 tons of equipment and over thousand people to accomplish such a service.

London 2012_timekeeping room

Olympic Games 1932 – The Legacy Begins

1932 was a defining year in the history of sports measurement. For the very first time, a single private company was entrusted with keeping time across all events at the Olympic Games. That honour went to OMEGA, who supplied one timekeeper and 30 high precision chronographs which had all been certified as chronometers by the Observatory at Neuchâtel. In this first occasion as Official Timekeeper of the Olympic Games, OMEGA was able to capture results to the nearest 10th of a second. The brand’s expertise was highly appreciated by the officials in Los Angeles and was also invaluable when it came to confirming 17 new World Records. The event was also notable for having the first Olympic Village, as well as the first medal podiums at an Olympic Games.


OMEGA And The Olympics

On 26 occasions since 1932, OMEGA has fulfilled the prestigious role of Official Timekeeper at the Olympic Games. Now, as the world’s attention turns to Rio de Janeiro, the brand will once again assume its duties, with the same commitment and passion that has stood the test of time.

Under OMEGA’s watchful eye, records have been set and broken, history has been witnessed, and legends have been made. No matter the year, the Olympic Games always deliver a multitude of great moments in time. Now, as the world’s attention turns to Rio de Janeiro, the brand will assume its duties for the 27th time. Surrounded by the colour and culture of this vibrant city, the brand will work with the enduring commitment and passion that has sealed our unrivalled reputation. But behind the action, are the technologies that have captured and recorded every second.

In the pool, OMEGA has developed many systems that make victory indisputable. These include, among many, the first semi-automatic timer for swimming events, and the famous touchpads positioned at both ends of the pool lanes.

Out on the track, OMEGA has been responsible for the research, development and manufacture of the most famous devices used in precision sports timing, among them the Scan’O’Vision photo-finish cameras, starting blocks, false-start detection technology and high-speed video systems.

With athletes now becoming faster and stronger, OMEGA is dedicated to matching their desire, and will continue to advance the technologies it contributes to the Games. This will ensure that whoever stands on the podiums now and in the future, will do so with the most precise knowledge of their medal-winning performance.

London 2012_New starting block 2

London2012_swimming timekeeping_4

2012 – 2016 The Trusted Timekeeping Of Today

Looking at the Olympic Games today, it is clear to see that OMEGA’s timekeeping has evolved to become a highly-sophisticated system that leaves no result in doubt. In London in 2012, OMEGA introduced three new pieces of “futuristic” equipment including new starting blocks used by sprinters and shortdistance runners; the innovative Swimming Show that instantly ranks the top three finishers in the pool; and the high-precision Quantum Timer used in athletics and water
sports that has an enhanced resolution of one millionth of a second. Added to this, there are even more devices now being used such as the light and electronic sound “starting pistol” with its bright red colour, and the OMEGA Scan’O’Vision MYRIA that captures 10,000 frames per second in a photofinish. Over 84 years, our reputation has been cemented by dedication and passion. For the athletes who compete in Rio 2016, every result is now in very safe and experienced hands.

Discover The OMEGA Olympic Collection At Les Ambassadeurs in Zürich (from 3.-29.8.2016)

On the occasion of the Olympic games in Rio, a special exhibition of OMEGA will be held from 3rd to 29th of August 2016 at Les Ambassadeurs in Zurich. Come by and see how OMEGA has been capturing the dreams of the athletes fighting for victory for more than 80 years as an official timekeeper of the Olympic games.

OMEGA Olympics

The Evolution Of OMEGA Timekeeping

As athletes become faster and stronger, OMEGA has also advanced its own strengths and abilities in the world of Olympic Games timekeeping. Three technologies in particular have seen a great evolution that proves just how far we’ve come.

Progress Of A Starting Pistol (1948 – 2010)

1948_starting pistol

2010_starting pistol

Advancement Of The Photofinish Camera (1948 – 2016)

1948_Racend Timer

Camera Scan'O'Vision Myria_2

Photoelectric Timing (1948 – 2016)


2016_photoelectric cells

How OMEGA Times The 100m Athletics Event

pk_RIO_illustration 100M EVENT 1

pk_RIO_illustration 100M EVENT 2


pk_RIO_illustration 100M EVENT 3

How OMEGA Times The 100m Freestyle In Swimming

pk_RIO_illustration 100M FREESTYLE SWIMMING 1

pk_RIO_illustration 100M FREESTYLE SWIMMING 2

Closing Word

Timekeeping at the Olympics is an important piece of history. OMEGA is putting a lot of effort into the Olympics and I absolutely appreciate the hard work and effort. I’m looking forward to all the emotions and great times of the Olympic Games.

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