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Webrain Reports Archive

#226 – Sports Technology: The Data-enabled Fan Experience

In the world of sports, a variety of technologies have been adopted to measure and officiate sports competitions and to support athlete training. Since sports would not be possible without fans who support the players and teams, technology is also widely used to enhance the fan engagement and experience, while encouraging them to take in more sports content. The area of fan engagement in particular is projected to drive the growth of the sports technology market. Therefore, this report examines data-enabled fan experience in the following four categories.

The first category is "Offline Fan Experience," which showcases solutions that enhance the experience of fans physically attending sporting events, from entering the venue to real-time data visualization about the game and players. The second, "Online Fan Experience," introduces solutions that allow fans to connect with teams and players online or outside of the games. This includes blockchain and NFT (non-fungible token) games, watching games in the metaverse, and fan tokens. The third one is "Online Sports Betting." In the U.S., sports betting has been legalized in many states since 2018, and the market is growing rapidly. Companies like DraftKings and FanDuel are leading this market. The fourth one is "NIL marketing." The NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association) allows student-athletes to earn revenue from their NIL (name, image, and likeness) and technologies are available to help student-athletes navigate the complex rules efficiently. The report also discusses future forms of fan engagement, such as fans owning and operating teams through DAOs (decentralized autonomous organizations) and new behaviors of Gen Z in terms of how they consume sports content.