As a business development professional specializing in sports technology, Beau Adams of Cypress, Texas is always interested in the impact of technology trends in his space. He acknowledges that many developments are coming to a head in the sports industry in 2022, especially as experts recognize all the ways digitalization can improve experiences while pushing sports to a new level.
Since the landscape has paved the way for a wide variety of sports tech trends right now, many people interested in sports may not know which ones are likely to be the oldest. Here, Beau explores a few sports tech trends that are leading the way in 2022 and will continue to rise as they attract investors and push the evolution of the industry.
Sports NFTs are set to grow in popularity
Whether you love them, hate them, or don’t understand them, non-fungible tokens (NFTs) have recently seen a boom in popularity, especially in collector-oriented industries such as sports. A recent analysis provided by Deloitte showed that sports media is expected to generate more than $2 billion in transactions in 2022 alone.
Deloitte finds that player cards and video clips of iconic sporting moments are most likely to be the most popular and profitable use of NFTs. The study also predicts that four to five million sports fans worldwide will have purchased or received a sports-based NFT by the end of the year.
With the growing popularity of sports NFTs. Beau Adams and other sports tech experts agree that we can expect to see plenty of experimentation on NFT platforms as executives find the best balance of ownership structures to attract consumer demand while staying online. with the existing rights to these assets. This includes evolving existing platforms for sports-related NFTs while finding innovative ways for the technology involved in NFTs – like blockchain – to push development into the space.
Proof of concept for sustainable technology in large-scale sporting events
For years, sustainability has been a topic across industries as we seek to reduce our carbon footprint and preserve our environment for posterity. The sport is no stranger to ideas for improving sustainability, but in 2022 experts expect these methods to reach new heights.
A shining example of improving sustainability in the sports sector is the technology that we will see making its debut at the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar. This is largely due to the Global Sustainability Rating System (GSAS), a system created in the Middle East to rate and rate buildings on their sustainability impacts. This system will be officially used for the eight stadiums that will host the World Cup.
Multiple features of the stadiums that will host the 2022 World Cup show an interest in more sustainable practices. For example, Ras Abu Aboud Stadium will be the first stadium in tournament history to be fully demountable, meaning it can be dismantled after matches to make way for a waterfront venue and public green space.
Sustainable technology used in new stadiums in Qatar reflects growing priority of environmentally friendly practices in sport
The Doha Metro, which will be responsible for transporting fans across the country during the World Cup, has also been talked about for its regenerative braking systems which will serve to reduce its carbon footprint during operation. Qatar will use similar technology for electric cars and buses that will also transport fans to stadiums.
While the enduring technology that will be used for the FIFA World Cup is far from the only example in sport, it stands out as perhaps the most prolific. For years, experts have theorized about ways to reduce the emissions and environmental impacts associated with the tournament, and now we will have a proof of concept to make the necessary changes at future events.
The rise of artificial intelligence (AI)
Artificial intelligence has been used in the sports industry before, but experts such as Beau Adams predict its use will only increase in the latter parts of 2022. Beau notes that there are a variety of different ways we can expect AI to enhance experiences. and contribute to the analysis of the sport.
One of the most exciting applications of AI in sports is to optimize athlete performance while helping coaches provide feedback on techniques. Athlete AI stands out as a strong example of this type of technology. The company allows athletes to stream or upload training sessions or matches where AI algorithms can then provide post-match analysis.
Helping athletes determine what metrics they might need to improve points towards a potentially bustling new market for athletics, and we can expect to see investment in similar technologies throughout 2022.
Beau Adams acknowledges that there are a variety of other ways AI will stand out as a leading technology to improve logistics in sports as well. AI is expected to be a big boon for sports betting as it can be used for data to determine match odds. We could also see more AI used for features like video previews, virtual officials, and new ways to add value to the live sports experience.
Investments in digital platforms for athletes
As technological innovations continue to change the way athletes and fans interact with sport, it’s crucial they don’t fall behind. Beau notes that in the digital age, athletes will need to use platforms that set them apart from the crowd, especially if they seek to be selected by sports recruiters from a sea of talent.
In 2022, we can expect more investment in platforms that give gamers a one-stop-shop to show their highlights, game data, and assess sports programs that might be right for them as they take the next step. of their sporting career. Breakout Athletic Network – a digital platform founded by Beau Adams – takes this into consideration by providing athletes with a place to build their athletic CV. Breakout Athletic Network collects and stores data that includes highlights, game stats, academic progress, and other metrics appealing to recruiters.
While athletes have existing platforms to choose from to shed light on their progress as athletes, they are often scattered and do not include a one-stop-shop to view this data. The growing need for innovative platforms that completely streamline the creation of digital resumes for athletes will peak this year, and investments will pave the way for even more development.
A look at the future of sports technology
It is undoubtedly an exciting time for the sport, as the impact of digitization in space has paved the way for a wide variety of innovations. Expect – in the rest of 2022 – we will see a deep interest in technological innovations that serve to accentuate our experiences and bring a more personal touch to the games we enjoy. Investments in these exciting developments will undoubtedly influence the trajectory of technology for years to come.