March 26, 2021
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Published by
Mobii Systems
The 3 most promising tech for in-stadium experiences

Before 2020, sports venues in the United States raked in an average revenue of $145 million per year, according to an article published by UC Berkeley in 2019. Aside from the sale of the tickets, the entire in-stadium experience was a business opportunity: from the branded TV screens to the merchandise and refreshment stands. Some of these businesses locked their in-stadium leases for more than a year, becoming fan-favorites or even collaborating with sports teams to sell branded food or retail items.

The Covid-19 pandemic has rendered these businesses useless, as sports venues have been closed for months. But recently, vaccination rates in North America are going up and restrictions for in-person gatherings are loosening. This means the sports industry is slowly opening up its calendar again. In some cases, sports fans have gladly poured back into the venues despite the capped capacity or mask-wearing restrictions. So, how to re engage with them within the new normality –and possibly after the departure of in-stadium sponsors?

Three in-stadium technologies are available right now and they offer a new type of fan engagement. The best part? They’re versatile and less invasive than, say, a massive LED screen or Wi-Fi wiring all over the venue’s infrastructure. In theory, any venue could easily adopt one of these solutions:

  1. RFID labels. Low-cost, RFID labels are more frequently utilized to track participants in mass participation sports events. However, they can also provide an innovative in-stadium experience: a wristband enabled with an RFID label can be linked to the attendees’ credit cards so that they can be used for contactless purchases through the venue and personalized offers from vendors.
  1. Gamification. Users could log into an app, engage with trivia or games related to the sports teams or athletes they’re watching live, and engage with transactions. These can translate into actual physical products they can purchase, coupons for in-stadium purchases or other types of virtual rewards.
  1. OTT. Through MBB (mobile broadband), an over-the-top streaming (OTT)  feed can be created through various linked cameras, each with different angles and views. This way, the event can be live streamed through an app or a website. This represents an innovative in-stadium engagement: having attendees view a 360 view of the building they’re in, even if they stand from their seats and go to get a snack.

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