This Week In VR Sport: VR Upgrades in NASCAR and AR Adverts in Baseball

FOX Sports dominates this week with AR and VR upgrades for NASCAR and more

Though the seasons are turning and the weather is developing a chill in the air for many, the sports season just keeps on rolling, complete with new developments that involve immersive technology.

This weekend’s edition sees FOX Sports issues some upgrades to one of its NASCAR Studios while YouTube sports broadcasting courts controversy with augmented reality advertising.

FOX Sports Upgrades Studio With AR and VR For NASCAR

Though the NASCAR season is currently on break, that hasn’t stopped sports channel FOX sports from giving its Charlotte studio a makeover in anticipation of the start of the new season in February 2019.

According to SportTechie, FOX have teamed with virtual reality (VR) production company Zero Density to bring new features that will make use of the studios large green screen area, which spans a fairly impressive 50ft x 47ft.

The new renovations means that studio analysts can trigger AR features on set using Blacktrax 3D tracking technology, which will make the studio look like a race track, or present the appearance of a virtual race car emerging through the set.

“Innovation and ‘what’s next’ thinking have defined the FOX Sports approach from Day 1,” said Mark Silverman, President, National Networks, FOX Sports in a press release. “Working with industry leaders and integrating cutting-edge technology has produced one of the most advanced studios in sports. We are extremely excited to show it off early next year as we get viewers ready for the 2019 Daytona 500 on FOX.”

YouTube TV Present AR Adverts on World Series

For the second year, YouTube TV will be working with Fox to show the World Series after signing an expanded two-year deal with Major League Baseball which would see YouTube TV present the World Series until 2019.

The deal is not without controversy, however, with not all fans and analysts agreeing with the advertising-supported service, which will feature in-game spots, traditional adverts as well as AR advertising.

Fox will insert AR ads for YouTube TV that will appear on-screen before the first pitch and around the seventh inning stretch. These adverts have been designed to appear to be broadcast from the stadium’s video screen.

“The first year was, OK, here’s what it is, and this year, we want to celebrate what it delivers, which is more of what you love,” said Angela Courtin, global head of entertainment, media and experience at YouTube marketing. “The idea of ‘ruining TV’ is one thing. We want to celebrate our subscribers and the power that sports and TV has to bring people together, to elevate mood and excitement and deepen love and engagement,” Courtin said.

Check back next week for some more VR and AR in sport.

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