Each year, the utilization of augmented reality in various industries always skyrocket. Quoted from vXchnge, in 2023, the market is predicted to gain $70 - $75 billion revenue. No wonder that it would gain such a fantastic amount, since many industries are already benefiting from the technology.

One of the industries that shows quite a growth in utilizing AR is — unpredictably — the sports industry. Be it the athletes, coaches, judges, or the fans, they all can directly enjoy the benefits from it.

How can AR exactly be implemented for the sports industry? Let’s spot them together!

1. On-site stadium experience

Augmented reality experiences in sport stadium
Photo: Panasonic Newsroom

Watching your favorite sports team playing on-site is surely entertaining. But, with AR, it will be much more entertaining than you could ever imagine.

Panasonic, apparently, seized the opportunity and made the first move on how to enrich the audience’s experience using AR.

In CES 2018, Panasonic presented a whole new way to watch your favorite team in the sports stadium — starting from the entrance until when you’re in your seat, watching the games.

Using the smart glasses provided, you can see pop-up information about the game. With the immersive visuals and information, understanding the games will be much easier. You can also change the camera angle whenever you need to see a different view of the game.

The AR implementation, however, is not only limited to your watching experience. Using face recognition, you can enter and watch the game without having a physical ticket at all. Or, in other words, the tickets will all be paperless!

Although it’s still only a raw projection (yeah, they’re still in the process of developing it), we believe it’s going to happen sooner than ever! To present you with better visualization, you can tune in to the video below.

Video: Panasonic Newsroom

2. AR for sports broadcasting

Augmented reality for sports broadcasting
Photo: Technicolor

Even though you’re not watching your favorite team on-site, in the future, you can enjoy the game as a whole from the comfort of your own home.

We believe that sports broadcasting is ready to use AR to complete the experience. Just imagine you can enjoy the commentary, graphical analysis, and discussions popping up in front of you — it would be very thrilling, right?

But as much as we’re all pumped up while waiting for the time to come, you might also not realize that the world of AR sports broadcasting is already in front of your eyes.

It turns out that the live telecast you watch on television is adopting 3D technology. When you notice, the animated replay, or the footage of the game is actually augmented by realistic 3D graphics.

Some sport channels, such as ESPN, FOX Sports, and others, are already making use of the technology.

3. AR for athlete training

Augmented reality for sports training
Photo: Quino Al (Unsplash)

The use of AR for athlete training is already proved to be efficient and worth the try. Here are some cases.

Firstly, when the athletes need to practice new skills or techniques, they probably need to search for videos and articles in the first place, watch or read them, then there comes the long practice section.

But, with the help of AR technology, you can cut down the process and maximize your practicing time simultaneously.

When practicing, AR can help you to overlay the information, graphs, and video clips altogether. So, no need to be torn between watching videos or practicing right away. You can do both, and most importantly, you can understand the concept better!

Practicing basketball techniques with AR | Video: DribbleUp

Secondly, we know that injury really determines the athletes’ careers. Of course, together with their coaches, they will try many ways to minimize, or possibly, get rid of the risk.

But the good news is, AR can actually help to minimize the risk.

As the athletes practice their moves, AR can scan them and analyze whether the practice is considered risky or fine to be conducted further. And, if they’re proven to be risky, the system will recommend the athletes to omit the moves from the practice session.

However, to enjoy the benefits above, you need to use applications or devices that can support you. Some applications, including NBA's HomeCourt and DribbleUp, or the smart goggles such as FORM (for swimmers) SOLOS (for cyclists) definitely can help.

4. AR for fair sports judging

A sports judge on his duty, wearing a black-and-white tee and cap
A sports official | Photo: Sport for Life

No matter how prepared and experienced the judges are, sometimes things can happen out of their hands.

To reduce the possibility, AR can be generated to assist judges when they make their decision.

One of the AR systems that have already proven to be legit is the Hawk-Eye system. This technology is widely used in several sports games, such as tennis, badminton, soccer, and volleyball.

With its nearly perfect accuracy, it can track the ball trajectory and estimate the path of the object. This technology, without a doubt, will save the judges from making unfair decisions on the field.

5. AR for marketing & engagement

Augmented reality for sports souvenirs
AR for sports souvenirs | Photo: Zappar (YouTube)

A good game is nothing without great marketing support itself. This plays a crucial part, especially for the fans of sports teams.

Stuff including posters, t-shirts, or other merchandise that are creatively made, will surely boost up the sales.

Now, it’s time to say goodbye to the same, old merchandise since AR can also be infused for sports promotional purposes! One of the brilliant ideas is the souvenirs made by the American football team, San Fransisco 49ers.

Using marker-based AR, the fans of the team can scan the souvenirs, and it will later show the highlights of their favorite team. And, by using this new invention, the team eventually increased their sales.

Video: Zappar

Moreover, AR can also be utilized for ads-placement during the live telecast.

Ever noticed the ads on the sides of the soccer field? This, apparently, can be placed using AR.

Need the visualization? See this picture below, you will surely get the hang of it.

Photo: Queppelin

Wherever their geographical locations are, the ads can be placed to attract sports fans. In the end, it can encourage them to buy the products or use the services in the ads.

Overall, some of the AR implementations are already happening. So, while you’re waiting for some moments that are still futuristic in the sports industry, let’s broaden your horizon about more AR implementations on our AR Insights!

Notes: If you’re already eager to watch your favorite sports game with a more immersive visual, then so does our team! 👀

In Assemblr, we believe that all people – including you – can create and present your own AR experiences. With an easy-to-use application, Assemblr empowers people to implement AR in any occasion. Interested to unveil more possibilities of AR? Download Assemblr now, available in App Store and Play Store!