As technology develops and improves, it’s only natural that consumer expectations also evolve and grow. This is something we see happening across all verticals and demographic segments. The sports industry, in particular, has been very good at leveraging technology to improve the fan experience in recent years; however, there is a striking disparity between how it has been used to enhance the at-home viewing experience, in contrast with the in-stadium environment which has remained largely unchanged. So how can sports bodies leverage technology to redress this imbalance, and provide an enhanced stadium experience that meets the expectations of today’s digital first fans?
Enriching the sports viewing experience
Fans have grown accustomed to a home viewing experience that delivers much more than just the main event, with access to multiple camera feeds, replays, and statistics overlaying the game on their TV screen. With attendance to stadiums showing signs of a gradual downward trend, it’s critical that sports organizations invest in equipping venues with the technology to provide fans with a premium experience that entails all of the augmentations home viewing now delivers.
Enter the in-stadium mobile video experience. Fans will be able to use their own mobile devices to stream live action from multi-camera feeds, action replays, as well as accessing game statistics. As well as using XR devices, such as AR glasses and headsets, XR can greatly enhance the experience on mobile devices. Whatever the device, video providers can overlay the pitch with data enhancements such as player statistics, shot trails, and speed traveled. At the same time, the fan is still experiencing the exciting stadium atmosphere that comes with watching a live game alongside thousands of other fans. Enriching the stadium experience in this way would truly give people the best of both worlds.
Improving stadium connectivity with 5G
The challenge is to successfully deliver a near real-time video experience to tens of thousands of fans, all gathered inside one venue. For an in-stadium experience to meet the discerning fan’s expectations, it needs to be of the highest quality and delivered with the lowest possible latency. Matches move at an incredibly fast pace and seconds count. If a fan’s video stream has a delay or buffering while they switch to a different camera feed, this could mean that they miss a goal or other important highlight, which would of course be intolerable. This is where next generation 5G connectivity solutions come in.
5G networks offer significantly higher bandwidth and capacity compared to previous generations of wireless technology. This means that more fans can simultaneously connect to the network without experiencing slow speeds or dropped connections. 5G also has extremely low latency, enabling data to be transmitted almost instantaneously. This is crucial for an in-stadium experience that delivers multi-camera streaming, instant replays, and in-game overlay enhancements.
Unlocking monetization opportunities
An in-stadium fan video experience will empower sports bodies to take sponsorships to the next level by creating memorable super campaigns across the stadium that allow the audience to interact with brands and sponsors. And by incorporating e-commerce and merchandise sales, sports organizations will be able to establish new and exciting revenue streams. Fans could buy tickets for future matches, purchase their team’s latest merchandise, and even order half time food and drinks. Additionally, by leveraging the valuable user data that is captured through fan engagement, advertising can be better targeted, increasing ad revenue, and the viewing experience can be ever more personalized to improve engagement. This has the potential to revolutionize the fan experience for stadium based sports as well as sports in other venues such as racetracks, golf courses etc. This new fan engagement could be used as a tool to increase the amount of time a fan attends the event, as well as increasing the time, and level of engagement, spent on your OTT platform.
It’s time to step up your game
With our premium, next generation XR video solution, Accedo Xtend, sports organizations will be able to augment fans’ viewing experience with real time access to statistics, replays, and multiple camera angles. All of this is made possible in the venue, at scale, thanks to Ateme’s cost effective 5G connectivity solution. At IBC, we’ll be demonstrating how sports bodies can leverage OTT video, XR, and 5G technology to deliver a quality experience to fans in the stadium.
This premium fan experience leverages Ateme’s 5G connectivity solution and AWS Wavelength, delivering a unique, branded, immersive, and near real-time video platform that fans can enjoy on mobile devices and XR headsets, to enrich their stadium experience.
See the demo in action at IBC on our booth (5.F40), or on the Amazon Web Services booth (5.C90).