Virtual Reality and 360° video is a awesome technology. The potential of Virtual Reality and 360° video is still very untapped and in the near future it will grow into one of the biggest mediums of entertainment.
We wanted to explore how virtual reality and 360° video will work in sports. We chose to test it at one of the Springbok rugby games to see how it will work, and if it has the potential we think it have.
Unfortunately I had to sneak my camera into the stadium, and I cannot share the actual 360° video here. However we tested it and it has tremendous potential for live streaming sporting events in 360° video.
Image from the stand where I was sitting and where I have setup my 360° video camera.
My 360° Video camera at the Springboks game – testing 360° video at a Rugby Game.
Streaming Rugby in 360° Video have many advantages
Below is some of our findings on how streaming live Rugby games in 360° Video can benefit all stakeholders.
- From the 360° video I have shot I can tell you that the experience is real. You get totally immersed into the 360° video and it feels as if you are actually at the game.
- The video can be watched over and over again. Imaging the 1995 Rugby World Cup was captured in 360° video. Any South African rugby fan could put on the virtual reality goggles and go back to the game and watch it if they were physically at the game.
- A new revenue model for Broadcasters. Broadcasters can broadcast the game in 360° video via live streaming and sell tickets to people whom could not make it to the game. These can be sold over and over again as the game becomes part of rugby history.
- If you live in South Africa and there is a cricket game in Australia a rugby game in England at the same time, and you cannot watch it because you are not physically in the country where the game is being played. You can simply pop-on the Virtual Reality goggles and view the game as if you are there.
- Spectators can get prime seating all around the stadium via virtual reality, and jump from one spot to the other watching the game as if they are physically present at the game.
E-Sports and Virtual Reality
Virtual Reality is going to play a key role in the future of sport. As the technology evolves people will be able to compete with other people inside virtual reality. Since virtual reality tracks your body and you move in high-end virtual reality devices the same as what you move in actual reality. Virtual Reality is going to open up new ways for us to interact with each other and play sports against each other.
The game will still be a game of skill, and the person with the best skills will win the game. I envisaged that in the near future 10 to 20 years we are going to either participate in Virtual Reality sports, or watch sport being played in Virtual Reality.