Fast Forward
Fast Forward

Sports coverage and sports fans demands across media platforms is driving innovation in the space and broadcasters/channels etc are being forced to continuously innovate across the various nodes of the sports coverage value chain.

Even in the television space sports channels are driving the changes in innovation in programme production. Sports broadcasters are doing all they can to attract sports fans. 3-D visualization for action replay is one area of active development. Point-of-view cameras are being modified to provide HD pictures. In the internet space some of the leading websites have come up with innovative 3 D animation rendering of matches to enhance the fans experience and also to fulfill the needs of the hour of home sports fans. Example:3D score card on Cricinfo

Besides video even the audio space there is continuous innovation. Surround sound for sports has given a fresh impetus to sound design, and BSkyB in the UK has been experimenting with some innovative audio production techniques to add to the excitement of viewing sports for its users.

In fact the biggest value of digitization of sports assets has been the value that it can bring to sports broadcasting. Rightly archived content can be used to add great value to the sports fans during a live game broadcast and is also of immense value to sports federations, players, clubs, sponsors and advertisers.

The new age sports fan pampered as he is with the highly enhanced coverage on TV and also on demand offering on digital media platforms like online and mobile is defining and changing even the other generic content consumption trends like music, movies etc. According to EIAA data, nearly 40% of sports site users watch TV, film or video clips online, much more so than the average European internet user (39% vs. 30%).

Interestingly, this activity has grown in popularity amongst sports site users by 144% since 2006. ComScore figures also show that from January to December 2007, time spent on sites with video streaming and downloads has increased by 72%, from 53 to 91 minutes. In March 2008 alone, nearly 154 million people visited these sites, an increase of 22% when compared to the same month in 2007

The new age sports fan is defining a new life style trend of “content consumption on the go”. He is not bound by location, time or device and he carries this habit even for accessing his other content needs like news, music, film clips etc. The need for information and updates on the go is highlighted by the fact that 93% of sports site users own a mobile/PDA/Blackberry (vs. 83% of all Europeans) and are heavy users of mobile internet. Interestingly, they are twice as likely as the average European mobile/PDA/Blackberry user to watch video/film clips via their mobile (12% vs. 6%) and are more likely to perform other online activities on their mobile.

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