Putting Fans Closer to the Experience – VRFocus


March continues to be confused with the weather as snow returns to the UK for another round but that won’t stop the sports coverage. VRFocus to bring you another edition of This Week in VR Sport with a number of sports related virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) stories. With the NCAA March Madness underway, Australian Cricket embracing VR and AR baseball on the plate, let’s dive right in.

Sydney Sixers Bring VR/AR To Australian Cricket

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Starting the week off with some cricket news as the Sydney Sixers are taking Australian cricket into VR. Working with Australian VR studio CatalystVR the team, who compete in the domestic Big Bash League, gave fans a 360-degree match day experience last year and now they are coming their push to bring more VR/AR experience to their fans.

The team have worked with CatalystVR to develop a number of different experience that fans of cricket can enjoy and allow them to come closer to the action. This includes additional 360-degree videos and even a chance for fans to win $2,000 (AUD) by giving them six tries to “Hit a Six” in a VR cricket environment. The team have even produced an AR application that lets users scan a stickers with their mobile device to enjoy creative AR adverts, information packs and more all accompanied by digital recreations of team players.

The Sydney Sixers are continuing to push VR and AR technology forward and find new ways to engage their fans with the platform. To many, it is likely to be their first experience with the platforms and thanks to the team at CatalystVR new and immersive experiences are continuously being developed.

NCAA March Madness Games Available to Buy in VR

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Much like last year, Turner Sports, in partnership with CBS, the NCAA and Intel, have released a VR app allowing users to experience a number of games on supported VR devices. The NCAA March Madness Live VR will allow access to games from now until early April and is available for Samsung Gear VR and Google Daydream devices. To watch a single match fans can pay $2.99 (USD) to enjoy a march or if they want to experience the full VR tournament then that access will cost $19.99 (USD).

The experience will put viewers right on the side of the court and let them be up close and personal with the action. Complete with multiple cameras to pick from, viewers will have a fully immersive experience complete with arena sounds and dedicated commentary for each match. After it is all over users are encouraged to explore the rest of the application as there is plenty of other exciting VR content to be enjoyed for free.

Virtex Arena Launches New AR Games for Baseball Fans

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Following on from the success Super Bowl version of their AR application Virtex Arena is now releasing a version for Baseball fans. Depending on your spot in the seating of a stadium, the application will adjust the viewpoint to match giving the player an immersive window into the Baseball world. Players will be able to enjoy one of two mini-games and even put their scores up against other players during a game with the ultimate winner being declared at the end of the game. As Baseball games have moments of downtime it is the ideal time to fire up the Virtex Arena application and enjoy a few rounds of AR Baseball for yourself.

Virtex Arena will be equipped to handle Major League Baseball (MLB) games at stadiums in New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Boston and St. Louis at the start of the season, with updates to include additional stadiums later on. Currently there are talks with minor league teams that could lead to partnerships but that is still all in the works. An early demo of the application can be viewed below.

That is all for this week in the world of VR Sports. For more on immersive sport news keep reading VRFocus and remember to check back next week for another This Week In VR Sport.


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