2018 is the year when the technologies will head-dive into the sports market. Streaming companies will invest big money in media rights and it will be played out on an international stage now. While internet companies will double down on media rights, alternate realities will test how consumers watch sports and athletes train. Let’s take a look at how sports is going to be revolutionalized by technology this year.
More streaming options from broadcasters
As traditional broadcasters work to cater to the cord-cutting consumer, ESPN and CBS will all launch over-the-top streaming services for sports programming. Time Warner Inc.’s Turner Sports service will launch a direct-to-consumer subscription service. It will host the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League soccer matches for a three-year period starting with the 2018 season. Armed with a subscription service for premium sports content, ESPN will launch a new mobile app this spring. CBS plans to launch a free 24/7 ad-supported streaming service.
Amazon, Facebook compete for digital rights
Growing competition from internet companies such as Amazon and Facebook is one of the reasons why traditional broadcasters are launching these OTT services. While Facebook’s $600 million bid to stream the Indian Premier League professional cricket tour didn’t work out, Amazon won the rights to stream 11 Thursday Night Football games. It also plans to start testing live sports streaming on Twitch.
Interactive statistics based off player data from wearables
The multimillion-dollar deal that NBA struck with Sportradar and Second Spectrum in 2016 to track and visualize game-day statistics, it plans to use to enhance audio-visual game feeds and broadcasts. To uncover new ways of visualizing gameday data collected from the chips, NFL placed RFID chips from Zebra Technologies in every uniformed player’s shoulder pads and game balls and plans to work with both Zebra and Amazon.