The NBA has found at least one technology partner to share in the idea: Magic Leap, the highly anticipated augmented reality startup set to launch its first pair of glasses this year, is now partnering with the NBA and its broadcast partner Turner, the companies announced Tuesday at Recode’s Code Media conference in Huntington Beach, Calif.
The arrangement means that users will be able to watch some NBA content, like classic games or highlights, once Magic Leap launches its AR headset. People wearing the glasses will be able to see multiple screens overlaid onto the real world, “pin” those screens to a wall like a giant movie projector, or watch them as they walk around. You could watch an NBA basketball game on one screen, for example, while getting live stats or social media updates on another.
The Sixers, according to multiple people who spoke with PhillyVoice for this story, believe they are one of a small group of NBA teams with a setup that allows them to train players in virtual reality. It is something the organization has been toying with over the last half year or so, which they believe is primarily useful to help put players inside a game situation, like being part of an inbounds play. It is a way to keep them involved in the program when they can’t participate physically, as they’ve done with injured rookie Furkan Korkmaz.
With Fultz, there is a different motivation to get him behind the VR goggles. The Sixers, according to multiple sources, wanted him to be able to visualize the mechanics he’ll use in a game, to remember how easy it once was for him to rise up with the ball and shoot from anywhere on the court, and to be able to do so without the glare of the cameras or other people around him. With pressure coming down on him from all angles, turning part of a teenager’s job into a video game is one way to relieve the stress of the situation.
Today, the Sacramento Kings announced an investment in innovative tech start-up, Xperiel, led by former Google executives Alex and Philipp Hertel. Xperiel’s Real World Web platform creates an enhanced and augmented reality experience for the Sacramento Kings through the team’s groundbreaking dual-mode mobile app. The technology that powers the platform, redefining guest experiences and customer interaction, has been embraced by other sports franchises and global brands. “The enhanced experience at Golden 1 Center extends off the court and into the hands of our guests through their devices,” said Kings Chief Technology Officer Ryan Montoya. “Xperiel’s advancement in linking next-generation technology with real-time data, an array of sensors and beacons in a device-agnostic platform represents the future of customer engagement and we’re thrilled to be a part of their growth beyond sports.”