Sunday, May 22

Netaverse: the new technology to follow the NBA in virtual reality

Last weekend, during the game between the Brooklyn Nets and the New Orleans Pelicans, fans were able to experience the “Netaverse”, a 360° virtual reality game streaming technology.

The name is probably the contraction of the name of the team, the Nets, and the alternative universe accessible in virtual reality, the Metaverse.

On Saturday, January 15, Nets fans were able to live an experience they had never seen before, neither at Barclays Center nor elsewhere: to attend an NBA game from anywhere on the field.

In a video posted Jan. 16 to Twitter by Yes Network, NBA fans around the world got a glimpse of what the select few went through that night.

“Tonight, the NBA, Brooklyn Nets and YES Network are proud to showcase brand new technology here at Barclays Center. We call this new view ‘The Netaverse’ and tonight is the world premiere,” said Michael Grady, announcer for Yes Network.

Top-flight technology to experience the NBA in a new light

Using more than 100 high-resolution cameras positioned around the Brooklyn pitch, images and player positions on the pitch were fed directly to Canon-developed Free Viewpoint software to generate real-time models. Detailed 3D of each player, with the right lighting and volume.

With this new broadcasting technique, fans could position themselves practically wherever they wanted to watch the game: on the edges of the field, behind the basket, and even in the middle of the field…

Many have called the technology “cool” or “crazy.” Others were quick to compare these images to the NBA 2K basketball simulation game. With so many details and a free point of view, it must be said that comparisons are easy.

Today, the Brooklyn Nets are the only professional sports team using this technology, and getting a head start in creating the future Metaverse. To see if other NBA teams decide to take the plunge…

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