Do we think the future of AI could see the demise of rugby teams? Will we say goodbye to the Premier League? Will people working in sports be replaced by robots?
Although, we can’t say for definite where the future of AI is heading or how it will impact the sports industry, we have tried and tested AI technology and we have quite a good idea of what the future could look like!
How can AI enhance sport?
AI is removing some of the human-led decision making from referees. Along with using video analysis to evaluate plays and find fouls, offsides and other infractions, AI is being utilised to aid referees in making decisions. Furthermore, AI-powered cameras can be used to follow player movements in real-time, giving referees a better understanding of the activity on the pitch and enabling them to make decisions that are both accurate and quick.
AI understands your fans
AI is being used to improve the fan experience, providing real-time statistics and highlights during games, analysing social media activity to uncover popular themes and publishing hyper-personalised content based on interests and preferences.
Without the help of AI, organisations would struggle to understand the massive amount of data produced by their audience, even if they were able to so, producing and publishing content on an individual level would be near impossible.
The NBA has harnessed the power of AI by using an AI-powered chatbot to interact with their fans, an experience they would not be able to provide without the help of AI. This tool will keep fans engaged as they are constantly receiving real-time updates, player statistics and other facts.
AI integrates into your marketing department
Fan experience often falls under the responsibility of the marketing department and there are many ways that AI can support and integrate into the existing department of organisations.
We already know AI can analyse data, which can be used to help make informed decisions
- Build content marketing plans
- Develop workflows and automations
- Complete keyword research
- Write copy for social posts
- Write blog articles
We have used AI for all of the above and we understand some elements will need a human touch. However, imagine all the hours saved by tapping into AI tools.
What does it mean for the future of sport?
The introduction of AI players will be the next phase. In fact, we already have AI entities that can emulate expert human strategies. They have the potential to advance AI’s capabilities while also revolutionising the sports business.
People immediately respond by saying such a future would never exist since there is no way we could ever enjoy watching machines, as many contend that AI is frequently monotonous and uninteresting (we disagree).
We put AI to the test and created an AI Football League where AI controlled everything, the teams, the score and some questionable images. Yes, AI has a long way to come but to see an entire league play out that was controlled completely by AI is unbelievable. If you want to see a very interesting mini league and the questionable images head over to our Twitter to check it out.
How can AI benefit sport
The main priority for sports organisations should be their fans and how they experience the sport. AI can do a lot for the fan experience including creating on-demand content that is personalised. The work of AI can help develop virtual (VR) reality and with 21% of fans hoping to use immersive technology to simulate being an athlete on game day, VR also appears to be ready to play a significant role in stadiums of the future.
With the current cost-of-living crisis and the impact of Covid the majority of sports teams are trying to cut-costs and generate more revenue. If AI is used more and more within sports teams will become more efficient. This doesn’t necessarily mean jobs being lost though. The ultimate strength of AI, however, lies in enhancing rather than replacing human abilities. AI may create new career paths in fields like administration and development, allowing workers to devote more time to analysis and creativity. With this extra time, marketing teams, admin teams and even players can spend more energy on what they do best. This increased energy and effort will no doubt generate increased revenue in the long-term.
It’s safe to say that AI has a long way to come, but we can see the potential and how it can be integrated into organisations to help alleviate challenges and increase workflow.
If you love AI as much as we do head over to our AI blog series to find out more;