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The introduction of the fifth generation of cellular technology (5G) has generated a lot of discussions globally. The introduction of the 5G networks means a step to reaching a smarter and more connected world with faster, more reliable connections for mobile devices and high-speed wireless local area networks (LANs). The sports industry is not left out of this trend. Nevertheless, what does the advent of a 5G connection means for the sports industry? And what is the future of sport media companies and fans?

5G has a great influence on the production of various sporting activities. In research by Vodafone, the study claims that sports industry leaders believe that 5G will have a greater influence than the former generation of 4G technology. 5G has the potential to reduce the carbon footprint of the sports industry with its capacity, as it opens up new production options and makes remote sports production practical due to this cellular technology’s low latency, superior reliability, resilience, and throughput.

The introduction of 5G is a significant addition to remote production. With 5G, you can freely move your cameras anywhere and anytime, and directors have now become freer, as they have a number of creative options whenever they call shots and pursue their ideas. Jin Ewaskiew, IBM Aspera offering manager, avers that “on the capture/production side, local 5G nodes will support much improved wireless camera connectivity, higher bandwidth, high resolution, and further coverage”.

Furthermore, the advent of the 5G networks has the tendency to alter or power richer fan interactions and ultimately provide new levels of sports enjoyment. With the availability of 360-degree cameras, sport media firms could create complementary or engaging exercises and engaging experiences with virtual reality, augmented reality, player and game metrics, etc. What this means is that 5G is a critical driver that could enable high bandwidth and low latency needed to offer new approaches for sports fans to see live contents that involve interactivity through technologies like Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR). Refereeing will become more comfortable, as the work of the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) will be easier because 5G’s high speed will allow for real-time footage of live-events from different angles.

5G helps various firms know their customers’ wants and helps them create new and exciting viewing experiences for customers. The 5G network has the capability to enable sports media firms to offer a social sports experience by allowing sporting firms to engage with their favorite athletes and teams. When you are in a stadium, you could obtain the player’s real-time latest statistics like speed, sweat, points, distance covered, heart rate, goals, and whatever you desire when you point your phone at a player. You could even send your messages, photos, and tweets instantly without being annoyed by the lack of capacity of the network in the stadium. 5G will also revolutionize sports betting within and outside the stadium, as connectivity will no longer be a challenge and there will be enhanced searching capabilities and faster transactions.

5G technology has not only had a significant impact on the sports industry. This kind of technology is a game-changer in a nation’s economy and business. This is because the technology does not only alter the fan experience and the manner of operation of sports organizations, it also has the potential to create new revenue opportunities and help athletes to improve their training programs and fitness. This means that with 5G, clubs could offer their fans data connections in their stadiums with the availability of replays of game footage whenever there are pauses in play and player statistics available as a match is played. For instance, The Golden 1 Center of the Sacramento Kings is one of the world’s most technologically advanced sports facility which provides a stadium WLAN for each of their 17,000 visitors with above-average speed. Another thing is that fans could freely conduct app-based polls, order food items straight to their seats, adjust the temperature of their seats, and view live replays from diverse camera angles. What you only need to benefit from these numerous advantages is to have a smartphone that is 5G-enabled.

Thee 5G could also increase the abilities of elite athletes through enhanced augmented and virtual-reality applications, faster data-driven decisions, better performance tracking, injury prevention, and rehabilitation. With 5G, players can quantify their performance in new ways because they can now analyze real-time data and make training programs completely personalized.

For instance, in sports like Formula One race where there are various communications platforms throughout an event, this cellular network technology could be used to differentiate between the participants and know who emerges first and who emerges second. If you are an athlete, either a sailor or a golfer, you could utilize 5G to virtually train in the online space. Hence, bad weather is no longer an obstacle for athletes to train outside freely. 5G has coupled with it Virtual Reality equipment which allows uninterrupted practice and no latency training just like in the usual track or course.

5G has the probability to boost an athlete’s chance of success, as it is possible “to ‘wire up’ athletes with multiple tiny sensors that will transmit physiological body signs, micro-movements of joints, limbs, and so on, as well as acceleration, speed, and altitude.” These tiny sensors could be “modeled in real-time using artificial intelligence (AI) and deep-learning techniques to inform coaches to help provide subtle changes to provide a competitive edge. This new system is only possible by an ultrafast streaming data connection that 5G can provide”.

Conclusion

In conclusion, 5G can take basketball, rugby, football, and many other sports to the next level in terms of preparation for a game and following the game up. The exciting thing is that through real-life remote coaching, 5G has democratized access to knowledge.