The Future Sports Media Landscape: Now What?

The internet has already had a profound impact on the sports media industry, and it is likely that we will see even more advancements in the future. In this final blog, I will explore some of the potential future advancements of the sports media industry and how the internet could shape the industry for the next generation of sports fans.

Currently the internet is developing rapidly and is having a great influence on numerous media outlets, most notably television. The past 10 years have seen television, like newspapers, adapt to the digital age and bring their coverage online with the introduction of mainstream sport streaming (Hutchins et al., 2019). The increasing availability of high-speed internet and streaming devices, such as smart TVs, tablets, and smartphones has made it easier than ever for people to access live sport online, contributing to the rapid growth of sport streaming (Hutchins et al., 2019; McQuail and Deuze, 2020). As time progresses streaming technology will only improve, with broadcasters looking to the internet to provide another innovation to the industry.

BT Sport utilises VR and AR and the advances of internet to revolutionise the streaming industry.

Virtual and augmented reality is one of the most exciting innovations to have hit sport media. These technologies have the potential to revolutionise the way that we experience sports (Miah, 2017; Qian, 2022). A rise in demand for sports tickets often means that there is an excess demand for sporting events, VR can give remote fans access to games and provide an immersive experience (Miah, 2017). Miah (2017) shares that VR and AR can offer new and unique perspectives on sporting events that would not be possible with traditional broadcasting methods, explaining its newfound popularity.

Augmented reality can bring real-time stats and analysis overlaid on top of a live game, enhancing the viewing experience. These technologies have the potential to bring fans even closer to the action, giving fans an interactive viewing experience that they are in control of (Goebert et al., 2022). From the choice of camera angle to commentary, streaming now enters an exciting age where fans have more autonomy than ever.

Online streaming platforms have also facilitated the creation of an emerging ‘e-sports‘ industry that is now worth billions and commands audiences of millons worldwide (Li, 2017). The industry is popularised by Gen Z and Millenials who regularly consume online video gaming content and competitions on streaming platforms such as Twitch. Popularity among the young generation offers insight into the potential future of eSports and streaming as an industry which only looks likely to grow in the future.

Launched in 2011, Twitch has become home to eSport streaming and even live sport streaming. In 2014, Amazon acquired Twitch for $970 million to add to Amazon’s streaming portfolio (BBC, 2014).

This wraps up my four-part blog series, I will now be transitioning into creating video content on YouTube where I will be discussing all things sports media. Don’t forget to comment and like if you enjoyed.

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