World Cup fever arrived in earnest in our office last week with the team sweepstake.
Belgium and Argentina are my teams to watch though it may need a “hand of God” to get Argentina out of the first group stages. Each World Cup always brings surprises and superstars and this time round innovation may be the real star. Technology innovation means that all 64 matches are captured in 4K UHD and HDR with multiple cameras capturing every move and mood from numerous angles. Immersive sound, 180-degree live streams and VR content are mainstream whilst the players’ individual performance will be analysed by wearable sensors to help deliver the perfect score. Innovation has also resulted in video assistant refereeing (VAR) getting its first outing at the World Cup – perhaps that will eliminate “hand of God” stories to pass onto future generations?
Whatever the final score, innovation continues to stretch the boundaries in all aspects of sport from broadcasting to kit, from robots to clean stadiums to modelling crowd control. The sports market is a real and growing opportunity for many of the rising stars in Scottish academia and companies as they trial new facilities and technologies. Perhaps the real prize will be a virtual reality Scottish team set up to win the 2022 World Cup!