Connected Stadiums

Sports Stadia 2.0

Tech is improving and with smartphone penetration at an all-time high brands now realise they have the means to connect to a captive audience of thousands inside stadiums.

While wifi continues to be a bugbear for stadia the world over, the potential commercial benefits are now getting closer to eclipsing the investment needed to bring these stadiums up to scratch.

Other advancements in RFID technology means that brands can track the behaviour of fans even more accurately and tech such as VR and AR offer further ways of making it a more enriching and engaging experience between brands and fans.

Brands could capitalize on this in a number of ways.

AR stadiums – AR apps have exploded in the last year with Pokemon GO the watershed moment that AR became simple, functional and most importantly…fun! There are now AR apps that allow you to envisage a new tattoo on your own skin, identify constellations in the sky and leave AR notes scrawled on walls for your friends to find at a later date.

The most obvious advancement in AR that can be seen in the sports world is the yellow 10 yard line in NFL this reinvigorated the NFL TV audience and helped enhance the viewing experience without distracting from the game, another great example is ProTracer, again this helped viewers get a better understanding of the shots golfers were playing without interrupting the viewing experience.

Now this tech is readily accessible on mobile phones, could this be used to drop a virtual ‘gain line’ during rugby? Could it show the offside line in a game of football? What about game stats for tennis players appearing above their heads during a match? Split times for athletes running 10,000m? Leading ‘ghost car’ graphics on the track at an F1 race? The possibilities are endless. The most important thing to keep in mind is that the event should still be the hero piece and the fan experience should not be diminished.


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