Virtual Reality is the future of Sports Broadcasting

April 18th, 2017

Film has been the most engaging medium for decades. Although it was the most immersive medium as well, something was still missing. Presence. Exactly what could’ve been better. Virtual Reality (VR) does give you this feeling of presence. Put on a VR Headset and you’ll feel like you’re somewhere else. That’s exactly what Virtual Reality can do to Sports Broadcasting. Through wearing the VR headset, people can virtually attend and experience live sports games from anywhere in the world.

What possibilities does this offer?

Be there

Anfield, the stadium of Liverpool FC, seats around 54,000 passionate fans when it’s hosting a soccer game, as it will once every two weeks in the Premier League. Although, that is a large amount of people, it will account for less than one percent of all the people watching the game at home or somewhere else. So what if they could be there as well? From home, without having to travel and queue up. VR gives people the opportunity to virtually attend such events.

Control it

Right now, watching a game in Virtual Reality is far more engaging than watching a game on a TV at home. Also, it doesn’t require all the things that come with attending a sports event. That’s cool, but it doesn’t fully succeed in capturing the in-person experience.
Some things, no matter what, give people the feeling that they are still watching a TV show instead of attending the live event. That would certainly change if broadcasters would give viewers the opportunity to choose their spot in the stands and watch the game from one position, as they would do in real life.
Instead of switching the cameras for viewers, broadcasters can give the fans the opportunity to take control themselves. If someone wants to be right next to the pitch, they could be there. If someone wants to be somewhere in the stands, VR broadcasting could let them be there. That’s not TV anymore, that’s creating something new. Something that has a lot more value than the original sports broadcasting.

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