We’ve already talked about virtual reality and gaming. Now, even sports have begun to employ VR-based technology in an attempt to bring the public even closer to the playing field. What’s sports VR, you ask? Well, in this article we will try to explain the so-called sports tech and how you’ll probably need to buy a headset to watch your favorite match.
What’s Up with Virtual Reality and Sports?
As you very well know, the gaming industry’s now booming thanks to virtual reality headsets. Everywhere we turn, we see new genres arising, new peripherals, and a new type of storytelling. But, we ask you – is that all there is to virtual reality? A technology with such enormous potential to be reduced to shooting zombies or climbing? Then answer’s obviously “no,” and the sports tech craze is the kind of proof we were looking for.
The term can mean a lot of things – using virtual reality headsets like Oculus Rift to broadcast matches in VR or competing in VR sports with your friends. Other meaning could include training athletes and scouting for new players. As in gaming, the possibilities are nearly endless.
But what kind of VR tech would we need in order to make VR sports a reality? For instance, Facebook announced that it will be broadcasting live some of the World Cup soccer games using the Oculus Venues application.
Speaking of Oculus, at the moment, it is the best headset to be associated with sport-related activities. You can follow broadcasts via the app, download and store your favorite matches to feel like you’re in the audience, yourself, and even play a wide assortment of sport games.
Thanks to the vibrant display, the oculus headset is the right choice for viewing matches as it allows you to see even the smallest details on screen, so to speak. However, we are here to talk sports, but we do recommend you read additional information on this headset as it is the best tool to enjoy your favorite sports in virtual reality.
Back to the topic at hand – how virtual reality spearheads the sports tech craze.
Broadcasting Sports Matches in VR
Earlier, we said a couple of things about transmitting live games using virtual reality headsets like the Oculus Rift. Although this was, shall we say, Facebook’s gift to sports and VR fans, it looks like it’s here to stay. All the signs point out to virtual reality being the future of sports broadcasting.
The reasons are obvious – greater quality and the feeling of actually being there on the field and staring at the players. Oculus Rift might be the one who took the first step, but others are sure to follow. Virtual reality television is no longer something borrowed from a science-fiction novel, but something that would become an industry standard sooner than you think.
Of course, it’s trickier to ensure a clear and stable live transmission that it is to play a movie, but that’s not stopping them from going even further. Oculus’s video library contains everything from cult-classics to recorded matches.
So, as you can see, the future’s here to stay.
Playing Sports in VR
Seeing someone throw a ball is something but doing it yourself is an entirely different story. Well, speaking of balls and sports, virtual reality technology allows you to experience sports like never before. Remember FIFA? It’s a nice little thing to pass the time, but not exactly a substitute for the real thing. Neither is virtual reality, but at least you get the feeling that you’re actually in the middle of things.
Of course, with features like room-scale or other peripherals, a simple game could turn out to be an awesome and real-like experience. If we were to profess our love to some VR sports titles out there, we would definitely say that Sports Bar VR and NBA 2KVR Experience are among our favorites.
Virtual reality could also prove to be a great tool in training future athletes. For instance, companies such as Eon Sport or StriVR have put together comprehensible VR training sessions based on the experiences of coaches and physical trainers.
One of the system’s aim is to study the athlete’s motions so that they can be studied and improved. Such VR systems are currently being employed as complementary training methods by the NCAA, NBA, and the NFL.
Why use this technology to improve seasoned players when you can also use it to look for aspiring stars? Well, wouldn’t you know, that’s yet another way of how sports technology works. Using a VR headset, talent scouts offer young people the chance of proving their worth on the field. And everything is made to resemble a simple sports game. Clever and highly efficient!
As you can see, gaming’s not the only industry that takes full advantage of virtual reality. Although the beginning’s a little timid, we can expect in a few years to see the sports being overtaken by this technology.