Fans of the Fighting Irish and the Spartans can take in this Saturday’s game between the teams in virtual reality thanks to Fox Sports and LiveLike.
When the Notre Dame at Michigan State game kicks off this Saturday night, fans all across the country equipped with several devices will be able to not just watch the game, but experience the game.
According to a press release from Fox Sports, the VR experience will be accessible on the Fox Sports VR app, which is available on Android and iOS devices along with Oculus headsets. In addition to the normal television broadcast of the game, viewers will get statistics overlays, DVR functionality, and the choice of multiple camera angles.
Watching sports in virtual reality has traditionally held two major criticisms. First, the fact remains that most sports fans still don’t own headsets and the wearing of such devices can prove restrictive. Secondly, wearing the headset and consuming the media is an isolating experience. One of the reasons sports on television has worked so well is the ability to share the experience.
LiveLike‘s technology through a sponsorship by Wendy’s has solved both of those problems.
While Gear VR headset owners will be able to take in the game, no headset is required to watch the VR broadcast. Phone and tablet users will be able to experience the game in VR as well, through LiveLike’s “magic window” on the screen, which will immerse users in a VR “stadium suite.” Like a real suite in a stadium, the experience is best shared with others.
Users who link their Facebook accounts to Fox Sports VR will be able to create a personalized avatar to exist in the virtual suite. A social tab can be selected and up to three people can be on a user’s friends list who have also downloaded Fox Sports VR and linked their Facebook accounts. In the suite, the users can experience the game and verbally communicate together.
While this isn’t the first college football game that Fox Sports has broadcast in VR, it’s the first of this season and brings the technology to new fan bases. As these platforms continue to expand, the real winners are the fans who will experience the games in new ways.