The Tour de France 2022 is currently underway in its 109th edition. For the first time, however, this year’s in-person spectators can enhance their experience with augmented reality (AR) technology.
To test the potential of AR for sport events, broadcasting technology provider of the Tour de France Orange is partnering with French start-up immersiv.io. At specific points along the route, interested viewers will be equipped with AR glasses displaying an interactive 3D map of the race superimposed on the real environment. Users can access information about all stages of the Tour de France and familiarize themselves with the AR headset.
This year’s AR offer to cycling spectators remains an experiment and a display of new technological possibilities. Nevertheless, immersiv.io has already supplied other tech providers and rightsholders such as the National Hockey League (NHL) or Formula 1 with their AR solutions, either enabling an immersive stream of on-demand information to users or gamifications during breaks.
While enhancing the in-person viewing experience of fans at sport events such as the Tour de France, the start-up also develops immersive products for broadcast viewers in the form of a virtual mini-pitch tracking all on-court movements, of player avatars displayed in users’ homes, or of enriched TV feeds allowing fans to display multiple screens in front of them at once. For broadcasters seeking to enhance their product with the French start-up’s addons, however, the challenge of insufficient network infrastructure at viewers’ homes persists.
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