Speaker 1  

Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome to the stage president and co founder for sports and Innovation Lab, Josh Walker.


Josh Walker  

Thanks for coming. So you just missed or you enjoyed a great panel on sports data. Jill did a great job moderating that panel with a one in a G. And now we're going to do something hindoo technology buzzword, because these guys know everything from artificial intelligence to 5g to computer vision. And when we started our sports innovation lab on immersive media, I asked our advisor, Jeff Terry, who's the smartest guy in the industry on this stuff, and he said Michael Davies. So Michael Davies is going to lead this discussion from Fox Sports. So please, Michael and his panel. Enjoy the panel.


Michael Davies  

God no pressure, right. Thanks, Jeff. Thanks a lot, man. Now I know what he was saying. He was saying you know what, you're screwed when you go. up there, and I'll explain why later. My name is Mike Davis. I'm the Senior Vice President of Operations and technology at Fox Sports. That basically means that I take the blame for things when it goes wrong. And I am with a very kind of a diverse panel that I'm really happy to have, who are also no stranger to that sentiment. To my left is Andrea Berry and Andrea works for production resource group. She's the senior vice president General Manager of broadcast and TV. And then to her left is Danny Kim's known Danny for a long time he's the head of content at next VR and Doug water from Boingo is the Senior Vice President of Business Development of Bango Boingo wireless and also a member, still a board member of CTA, right. So good panel here and I guarantee you guys we're gonna hit all the buzzwords Okay, so everybody get your drinks. And when I mentioned 5g, ai, computer vision, IoT, everybody takes a shot. Okay? Now we are actually going to get to some of those. But look, I think that it's not an understatement to call the beginning of this decade. 2020 is the decade of innovation in sports technology. This is truly a dream it do it kind of time. With everything that you see here at CES, everything that you see here at nav, it's going fast and furious. And sports is always such a good place to think about where all these innovations can go both on the production side, and we'll talk that a little talk about that a little bit as well as the consumption side and I think we've got a great panel that can talk about all of this stuff. So I wanted to just, you know, go down the panel and thinking about like, Okay, if we say that technology Sports is, you know, say it's a supply and demand, what are fans demanding? What our end users demanding? You know, what kind of trends? Are you seeing both here at CES? And as we close out in 2019? What of this new technology, these new innovations? Are you interested in? Are you keeping an eye on what what is the demand that you're seeing that that you need to know? And I know that all of you will have different perspectives here. Andrew, you want to give it a shot?


Andrea Berry  

Sure. Um, I think that the institution on a large and a small scale because I I done both the very large events in the small regional type sports events, I think that the IP technology is going to be critical. building systems that support IP technology and being able to teach the personnel how to use it. It's going to be critical. I also think that data gathering is going to be critical. Our fans, our producers and directors who are designing all these ideas that we have to execute, are definitely interested in having a unique presence on the air. And that unique presence is causing them to do things that are going to engage the fan even more than we're engaging a fan now. So we want to know they the fan wants to know more about that athlete, they want to know more about the sport. There are new sports coming out there's new leagues launching and the bat of being able to tell the story with exact real time data in place is going to be very critical. It's also critical for for the new sports betting, which is seems to be a buzz right now. 


Michael Davies  

Here at CES Yeah,


Andrea Berry  

yeah. So that's, I think IP is definitely besides the AR and an AI and all that 


Michael Davies  

Yeah, no. Are you still drinking view here IP. That's another one. Sorry.


Andrea Berry  

Yeah, but definitely data gathering and accurate. data and data storage is going to be key.


Michael Davies  

Right? You've hit upon a bunch of things we're going to talk about today. Danny, what do you think? What trends are you looking at? Obviously, you and I work together? Yeah. Fox next VR had a deal together. what's what's what's when you look at the, the sports trends, from the perspective next VR, what do you what do you looking at? What have you seen? What do you see?


Danny Keens  

Yeah, I'm look on the lookout for things that will continue to enhance the fan experience when it comes to immersive media. You know, how do we continue to meet the demands of the sports fan, ultimately? And you know, one of the things I think a lot about is, you know, we always hear this term sort of product market fit, when it comes to sort of startups and products and I tend to think a lot about, you know, what's a fan market fit, you know, what is something that is going to enhance the fan experience? What is going to keep them more engaged, and how can we use immersive media to do that, and and, you know, one of the most exciting things, you know, we talk about buzzwords, we talk about 5g. They're absolutely Literally very applicable use cases when it comes to immersive media and 5g because ultimately with with faster connections and more bandwidth, comes more pixels. And with more pixels comes high resolution with high resolution, you ultimately start to sort of meet the demands of the sports fan when it comes to immersive experiences. I think to date, one of the sort of Achilles heels of of immersive media, certainly VR has been screen resolution. And and so the promise of VR has been this concept of, you know, presence and immersion, that we're going to put you courtside at an NBA game. But ultimately, that is not what you experienced when you've been in a VR headset, right? What you've what you feel like is you're staring at your phone screen, a couple of inches from your face, and it's really not what you thought it would be. And that's now changing and we're moving into an era where form factors of the devices have changed the becoming more lightweight, the screen resolution is increased and you are getting more pixels into the content and you start to now really Get that sort of sense of presence. And yeah.


Michael Davies  

So is VR. Like, I just want to one quick follow up. I mean, well that, you know, if we were sitting here four years ago, chances are you'd be having three panels on VR. Right. And, and, and that was exciting. Trust me, we bought in and I thought we learned a lot. We certainly learned a lot together. I mean, it's VR still a thing?


Danny Keens  

Yeah. I mean, look, we look, we always had the longest view in the room when it came to VR. I mean, you know, that with the company's been around for seven years now. We've always had this, you know, we've sort of read the wave of sip hype and all that stuff with kept a pretty steady ship the hallway, we understood that the key to success was device form factor, screen resolution, and also, of course, great content. And, you know, coming out of 2019 we had our biggest year ever in terms of viewership on the next VR platform. And, and and really looking forward to 2020 it's an exciting time,


Michael Davies  

right and, Doug, with with NGO, I think that one of the things that you really concentrate is thinking about the fan experience in the venue. I know Boingo does a lot of the you guys supply the means for a lot of these potential experiences to happen. What trends are you seeing? What are you excited about? As we think about innovation in sports as it comes to, let's say, the fan experience in the venue?


Doug Lodder  

Yeah. So, you know, to your point, I think bongos got a unique position in that we provide the infrastructure, which basically becomes the pipes that a lot of this great stuff rides on. And we got our start doing that, you know, 1520 years ago. So we've been seeing a lot of different iterations of what different venues want to do with the technology after it's in place. And so sitting where we said, we get to crowdsource and kind of see all the different strategies that have worked and failed and kind of bring them together for different categories or different venue types, piling on to the database. I think that's really important. I think having good data and understanding what to do with that data, learning from that data and taking action on that data. I think there's Good data today, I don't know that necessarily anyone is taking really great action against the data that's available. And then as far as the consumer experience goes, or the fan experience goes, I think, you know, there's got to be a connection between the physical world that's there at the game and the digital world that they're carrying in their pocket or that they got on their face. And I think those, those two bridges are starting to happen. So if you're asking me what I'm most excited about, it's probably going to be an old buzzword, but it's gonna be a buzzword, it's it's, you know, the continued evolution of 5g networks, the continued availability of cvrs spectrum and the launching of the three dot five, it's going to be all that coming together to create really fast, low latency networks that will allow the great things that next VR can do in the venue in real time, facial recognition of purchasing, you know, micro betting, I think, is going to be huge in these venues. And they have to get the networks to a point where they're really low latency so that when you're making a bet, you know that the bet was made probably To the event happening, so you can make more bets on more frequency, with everything from like is the next pitch going to be a ball to, to, you know, big events who's going to win the game. So


Andrea Berry  

and I think the fan is is is definitely screaming for more information especially about that athlete. So we're seeing on the data side, we're seeing a lot of biometric wearable technology that's increasing. I mean, we've always had it but now they're putting, you know, chips and gloves and things like that for boxing and you're getting all these biometrics that are telling the story as to why that athlete just was successful in that in that match or that game or something like that. And fans really want to know why there is yes, the guy is physically astute too and smart enough to win that game, but they also want to know more, how much is his punch, the speed of his punch, how fastest his kick, what is going on? And so I think that as as we continue to collaborate with production and creative people on the technology side, they're going to come up with more stories that push the envelope, the tech for the technical people to gain the type of data that they want.


Michael Davies  

Absolutely. And so, you know, Andrea was involved in the, in the launch of the TfL. She's not just a violent person by nature. She's, I just want to make sure that they knew why you're talking about punching, kicking. Yeah. So it's interesting, right, like when you think about networks, or I'm sorry, leagues that have just started up TfL being one of them, the xfl coming up. What do you find? I mean, now you've got this green field. You know, we were talking about data. Let's get down to brass tacks like, like what are you finding that the fan wants to know? Like, you know, you don't have I would imagine you didn't have too many restrictions and doing what you want to do. So good news, you can do anything bad news is that you know, you've got to figure out what what tells the story, you obviously don't want to use data for data's sake. Right? And you don't want to use you know, all this great technology for For the technology sake, but but but how did you determine what was interesting? And how did you determine, you know what technology we're going to use there?


Andrea Berry  

You know, you have to go back to, we're talking about all this big technology, you have to go back to storytelling. And I think that when you launch a new league, there's a million combat sports leagues, there's a million football franchises, how are you going to be different? And I think that the only thing that is going to really make that story different is to show a technical aspect of it that we hadn't thought of, and the fans are really they're kind of responding to what we give them and the more we give them the more they respond, you know, so back in the old fox days I used to work for Fox in doing your job in Field Operations but when we first put the score on the screen, non stop in real time people were not happy with that. 


Michael Davies  

No you remember like David Hill did this the the fox box David literally And this is true got death threats about it.


Andrea Berry  

Yeah. So they weren't happy about that. But then it became the norm. And then people wanted more data. So you're seeing data on every sport, NASCAR, football, basketball, whatever it is. And so I think when you launch a new network or launch a new league, if you will, you have to say, what is my unique visual difference going to be or the unique thing that I'm going to do? And I think the data is definitely not


Michael Davies  

only data, but also low latency data, graphing data, right. And


Danny Keens  

that all goes to this sort of concept of, I mean, all of the evolution that we're seeing in in sports, certainly, the broadcasting side of sports has all been about, like meeting the demands of the sports fan, right? It's been about, you know, fans care deeply about whether a team is winning or losing. And so when you watch sports, the evolution of everything you guys have done, Fox has all been about how do we ensure that we're meeting the demands of the viewer, right? Like, what then that's including comment, train, all the stuff. That's been light on the spots over the years. It's like, why is my team winning? What's Why is my team losing? What's the score wins? My favorite player going to be back was the underperforming? You know, all the questions you ask as a sports fan, is it's super important. But then you can also push it too far, which is data for data's sake, which is, right, which becomes really frustrating as a sports fan, because like, I don't care about the stats on this data, I just care about whether my team's gonna win or lose. So this is where


Michael Davies  

the editorial meets the technology. What do you find out like, in venue, like, if I was to be parochial and be the TV guy that I am, I'd say, you know, what people want in the venue is they want the TV experience in the venue. I want all that data and mixed reality. I want that in the venue. Good chance. That's pretty short sighted because I haven't thought about it as much as you have, Doug. But what in terms of data and all the technology that now we're able to leverage? What are you finding? What are you guys working on in terms of what the fan wants in the venue?


Doug Lodder  

Yeah, you know, I think the the In Home experience has two elements to it. There's the visual aspect of it. And all the great things that they do with broadcast. But there's also the comfort aspect, you have to go anywhere you have to get your car, you don't have to wait in line for the bathroom or to get a beer, let alone the pricing. And you know, but the one thing broadcast TV doesn't have a broadcasting doesn't have his interaction. Right. So what they can do with the fans in tribal nations, yes, right is you can interact with them. It's not just a broadcast and hope that the majority of the people watching, like what we just did, or like the innovation that we had, it's, you know, I can get real time feedback based on that interaction based on how many people are interacting, how much revenue it drove. Yeah. And so I think there's there's a huge element of interaction, that the, the technology innovations happening with broadcast are going to translate into, you know, they're going to put sensors on the players because it makes good TV, how do you take those sensors and turn them into good interactions with the fans that are in the stadium that's differentiated enough from the TV experience that it makes people want to go to the game?


Michael Davies  

advantageous to go to the game?


Danny Keens  

Yeah, that It's the evolution of sort of that's how, you know in my previous life I was head of sports at Twitter and and that was the evolution of our platform is like we didn't design Twitter at the time to be like this like, like conversational centerpiece around television, because but what we discovered it was because TV has always been a one way communication thing, right. And suddenly, second screening became this way to engage with television and people in a different in a different fashion. And like, you're talking now about the next evolution of that, right? Because what we've discovered is like, people like to talk about their time people like to talk about sport, people like to form communities. The whole concept of fandom is like, it's not fun to be a fan of a team if you can't find other fans of a team, right? Like, it's only fun to be a you know, the fan of a team is when you can find that community of people and celebrate the highs and the lows with them in in data will help do that in really great ways. Because the reality is is like the storytelling around sports now has changed. It's very, very different because in a in a previous world, let's take 1010 years ago right before the smartphone, there was no way to sort of engage in any conversation around like a sports event and how it unfolded other than if you were watching it with people on the couch right? Now you get you got fantasy sports, and you've got things like fanduel and DraftKings and the storytelling around the game has completely changed because now it's no longer about. It's not just about the team, but it's about individual players. One of the craziest things which I discovered, you know, a couple years ago was just how like, sort of viral Twitter gets on a Sunday morning when it comes to NFL and fantasy like this entire communities that are doing like storytelling around players and selecting who you want to have very well


Michael Davies  

thought out arguments. 


Danny Keens  

Right. Yeah. And so but all of that stuff is like really interesting. And it's all data driven. I mean, the whole fantasy sports in gambling in general is all about data. 


Michael Davies  

So where's that going? Like? Okay, so, you know, we've got, you know, all of our buzzwords, everything we've seen at CES, you know, we're looking at innovation where, where's that going? And then I want to also come back to the venue thing. But but but but where's that, that that going now? I mean, you know, where where does that how do we use some of these technologies to to enhance that? That that that social interaction for for sports?


Danny Keens  

Yeah, you know, it's hard to the question actually which sort of occasionally keeps me up at night when I think about data I think about use of data in VR is, is like, Is it still unclear who owns the data? So if you think about things like the NFL in the in the players, you know, the NFLPA and those sorts of things in the NBA players Association, they've always been great at protecting the players when it comes to like use of imagery right like the uses their headshots or use of like, you know, endorsements and all that sort of stuff and protecting them. And I start to think to myself when all this data is being collected about an individual win on the sporting field, just the league on it does the team on it does the play on it. Especially if it's being monetized through fantasy sports, unlike if it's me as a professional football player, and my name is being used to drive all of these sports apps, is it is it should I ever share in the source of money and revenues?


Andrea Berry  

You're gonna start a huge trend now. Right,


Danny Keens  

right. Right. Well, I mean, look, it's very personal, right, wise, wise my players out of any different to my, to my image on my face.


Michael Davies  

I mean, there was a very interesting technology that, you know, we saw that the cannon did out in the out in Japan for the Rugby World Cup where they set up an array of cameras and actually achieve some pretty compelling volumetric capture now, so that brings up all kinds of different issues because now the player playing on the field, we can have, you know, a variety of different data, you know, that that, you know, visual and performance data. Yeah, but I think some of that though.


Doug Lodder  

I think some of that, though, tends to lead to paralysis in innovation. There's fear that that This might happen or that might happen. And we see this a lot in sports, because there's a lot of attorneys involved in sports. And, you know, innovation can get stifled, especially with the big leagues and the big teams, some of the innovation just requires teams to cooperate and to work together. And oftentimes, when you're talking about in the new technology, which is where we play a lot, it's it's it's hard to get one team to do something that other teams haven't already done, or because they're worried about one story they heard or they're worried about something they heard at CES. So I think that is is, you know, the NFL and the players and other leagues should, I think focus more on, put it out there, figure out what fans want, test, trial pilot, whatever you want to call it. And if it starts making a bunch of money, then worry about how to chop up the pie a bit later,


Andrea Berry  

which is why I was initializing that that risk. Yeah, like you talked earlier. A lot of your big players may want to take that risk, but when you can to a smaller player, they may not want to take that risk of resting in an infrastructure investing in technology, a


Doug Lodder  

double edged sword of the new leagues, right the league's that have the most money have the most to lose. Yeah, and the new leagues that are bootstrapping don't have the resources necessarily, but doesn't quite have the will. Yeah. Yeah. To go do these things. And so it's hard to find, you know, the balance between who's got the capabilities to do it and and who has the desire, right. Like, this is


Michael Davies  

something why I was I was interested in finding out your CFL experience because it is a bit of a Greenfield. Same thing with the NFL, you want to put cameras and helmets go ahead and do it you want to do and then you hope at that point. And you know, for the bfl to like if you look at you know other like UFC or even boxing You say, Well, if it really works for the pff that actually driven something, then of course, it'll be follow. It'll be followed.


Andrea Berry  

We'll have to get commission. Well, you know, the commission still will have to take a risk. So you have technologists who are taking a risk to have fun losers and directors taking risks. And you have that commission that governing body of that sport that has to be willing to take that risk. And so there was, you know, in combat sports is by state by state. And so some states will say, yeah, you can do this and some states won't. And so you, you, there has to be a common ground as to where we want to end up. And what, how are you going to attract more fans? Really, because that's where their revenue is coming from?


Michael Davies  

So be a good good start. So what is that? Just a you know, what, what's going to attract more fans like of all this technology, like? Like what, what seems to be the trend of things that first work on TV and then maybe work in the venue like what seems to be the technology that the fans are asking for the most?


Andrea Berry  

I think second screen information is an interaction and the more immersive ability that the fan has, it makes them feel as if they're part of the production. I think that's going to be really the driving force. That's free, right? betting betting is going to be huge because when you look at a sporting event, say on Facebook Live, there's a whole conversation of a community that's watching that sport that is doing their own editorials, they're talking about the sport. These are hardcore junkies, if you will, who? Who want to feel as if they're not just watching a screen and enjoying who's going to win or lose. They're making commentary there. But they're providing that maybe that Twitter experience.


Danny Keens  

Yeah, but don't look I'm not to not to sound crude, but the, the bedding and the gambling. I mean, as you can tell from my accent, I'm a I'm originally from Florida, that but um, I mean, look, I come from a country where like betting and gambling is like, ingrained in the culture, right. And in Australia and, and the rate and the reality is is like it's really weird still. I mean, I've been here a decade and I still struggle with how gambling is still sort of in some senses. It's sort of frowned upon, or certainly it's evolved. I think it's legal now. In 20 states, but it's I find that still crazy because because it actually is just part of sports watching experience down on like w that mean during a sports game, W live betting odds come up on the TV, you know, you know me, you know encouraging you to make sports bets and it's just part of what we do here, it's still sort of a little bit tainted a little bit sort of like, you know, something which, you know, people feel a little bit uncomfortable with. That is clearly that sort of this sweeping change with that. And and as soon as that comes, I think it'll change the way that fans engage with nations.


Doug Lodder  

I mean, it'll be a catalyst for investment to I mean, it's, you know, in Australia the value of the gambling to the sports franchise, because it's been there a long time it's already baked in right devalue the franchise doesn't change. Mark Cuban's on record saying every NBA franchise doubled in value the day the gambling became legal. I mean, they all feel that this is going to be a huge value add to the franchises and you know, just because we're here in Las Vegas, Guess I was in a meeting yesterday. You know, last year was the first year in Las Vegas that food and Bev did better than gaming on the strip. And the reality is, and I got accused of, you know, being a non Gambler, but the reality is, my generation prefers that type of gambling to watching a ball bounce around on a wheel and fall on a number it's way too random, there's too much chance and you know, there's you know, poker is big, and that's about it. And so this notion that you could go to a game bring your tablet get great information on players that may actually help you make decisions on what to place a $1 bet on. And they are really small transactions but there's gazillions of them. I mean, that to me is going to drive a lot of innovation and and a lot of investment. I mean, it's going to take time there's a lot of stuff to get in place for it but it but it's going to be that I think will will drive a big investment and then once the the technology engagement platforms are in place, I think you'll see a lot of different tertiary uses of that data. Well, essentially, right, I mean,


Michael Davies  

sports betting, like when you think about all of the, you know, technologies or these, you know, buzzwords that we talk about sports betting is the one that sort of, you know, touches them all or uses them. All right, like, I mean, what kind of technologies, you know, that you might see at CES or in a B, which are the ones that that stand, you know, stand to be in the spotlight when you talk about sports betting, it's like all of them, right?


Doug Lodder  

Yeah, I mean, for I mean, to be selfish, I think the most important is, is the foundation, which is a really fast network. Really, really fast, really secure network, you need to be able to confirm that the bat came from where it came from, who it came from, you won't have time or energy to chase down collections and did that person really bedded and he's saying it's not him. You can't just true these things up at the end of the day. You need all this information in real time and needs to be really secure because security is another buzzword, take a shot. And you know, I think the the the the plumbing has got to be in first.


Andrea Berry  

Yeah. There's a lot of heaviness around the country that still don't have that fat those fast network. Yeah, yeah. And I think that a lot still need infrastructure, renovations, if you will, because you're going in, you're expecting a production group is expecting to be able to do all kinds of things. And they can't because that infrastructure is not there. So the structure is key.


Doug Lodder  

the sports industry tends to still be price shoppers, and it comes to those sorts of things, which is not how, you know, I think that'll change over time as the value of gambling kind of creates an ROI on the investment. I think right now they just see it as I've got to buy a jumbotron who's going to give me the cheapest one that's x big. I think they're still looking at technology who's going to give me the best deal on on iPads in the booths, right? So it's it's once they realize that the quality is more important than the price. I think you'll start to see big changes in the technology. platforms that are in place in these venues because there's still a lot of price shopping going on out there.


Michael Davies  

And, and in terms of the data for which, you know, people are, are maybe making in whether it's a, you know, a, a bat or you know, whatever their whatever they're doing, you know, one of the things that we see is that, you know, certainly real time tracking as part of this predictive analytics is this this new thing that now we can actually talk about on TV like the analysts really liked to, to hear you know, it, of course, it's predictive analytics, then you know, you're subscribing somebody's algorithm, right to determine what that is. There's a company called edge sports that uses the game winning chance, for instance, that kind of thing.


Danny Keens  

There's also a ton of companies that have emerged that have actually, excuse me, predictive analytics and betting as well. So you can subscribe to these companies that now will tell you give you the best chance of getting the best odds and again,


Michael Davies  

And, and the more data, the better. Now, what's interesting, I thought Andrew and I were talking about this little bit when Andrew said at Fox, she she presided, you know, NASCAR, right. And NASCAR was one of the the pioneers in real time tracking if you think about it, right, because, you know, you knew where the cars were in the tracks, you you, you had the telemetric, you know that you had the telemetry of everything. And just now they say over the last 10 years, they're basically trying to do the same thing with athletics, right, like every major sporting League has some kind of real time tracking, and this will feed in to the data, right, that 


Andrea Berry  

wearable technologyand all that but also you have to think of the peripheral stuff that's happening outside of the game. So your your, your coaching, interviews, your press conferences, your your your weigh ins, all of those things that need a strong foundational network in the venue so that they can do those, you know, if even if it's a bonded cellular type of transmission does distribution that is outside of the regular broadcast that's going on in Ott platform or for streaming. And it seems like all of the sports franchises are streaming something secondary to the game. And so if there's that secondary streaming going on whether it was a day before, right after the show, or during the show, those digital platforms really need to have strong infrastructure as well. And so, you know, yeah, we've got the tracking and, and all that, but I think it really, I think what we're going to see is where venues are going to demand that that infrastructure that you're taught,


Michael Davies  

and also the coverage of those peripheral events, those types of things. Okay, well, got about 15 minutes left. I think that's enough to maybe talk a little bit more about 5g and some of the things that that may be coming and one of the things you and I Andrew were talking about is that while 5g is definitely new with cellular networks for quite some time. And this this goes to what you were saying in terms of some of these peripheral events, but what do you what do you think? In terms of, you know, maybe not just 5g, but how are we leveraging cellular networks to achieve more efficient productions and potentially make other, you know, sports that may not, you know, carry the kind of return that would, you know, necessitate a real production budget? Like, like, how, how's that evolving? And how is that gonna work out with 5g?


Andrea Berry  

I think it comes down to economics as, as you were alluding to, there are a lot of sports that don't use the big mobile unit trucks that that are off site, you know, that are in really remote areas where you just have the fly packs like we provide them with production resource group where I work at now, where you have that that fly pack that IP based fly pack, you don't have a satellite truck coming in, you know, you have to feed it to an Ott platform or even to a broadcaster for that matter. And those bonded cellular systems, if you will are Compact. They're cheap trick to move around, move around. And they work. Yep. And you know what I have said that 10 years ago? Absolutely not. Because


Danny Keens  

that's the stuff that we do. So we'll do when we started with Mike knows this better than anyone we started with we built production travel to Danny. Yeah, and we and we still have these production trucks like the live around the country to do our live NBA games every every week. But we have flight packs now too. And those flight packs are like cheap and easy to move around. They'll they'll run up to five cameras, three, three cameras, we can get them up to five. And we will and will use them more often than not like for something like tennis when you send a flight pack, right? And it's super cheap. And it's and it's all IP based now and the evolution of that stuff is just made production. Producing television. Television in general is just an expensive business. But the flight packs and IP and 5g and all that stuff is gonna make it cheaper thankfully,


Andrea Berry  

yeah. And even the smaller groups like you know High School ball, high school basketball baller TV groups like that most sports going to be emerging like crazy. And when I see when I go to high school basketball games, you see series of tournaments being shot by baller TV, so that parent or that coach or that aspiring, you know, college or whatever, can now view this stuff instantly in real time. And so we're going to see a lot of small packages of technology there. They're going to be inexpensive that are going to be high quality that are going to allow us to to have that instant real time broadcast at live broadcasts were normally you know, old school using


Danny Keens  

when going back on the on the we used to send about 35 people to an N to an NBA game. Yeah, in the truck. 35. We did our NBA game we did last weekend. There was three people on site. Yeah, it's great people and everything else is just coming back to him 


Michael Davies  

was it about the same level of production, you say exactly the same level of production. Yeah, I mean, that's shocking, right? I mean, when you when you think about, you know, that and you know, whether it's technology or automated ways of of doing production or you know, the transmission we talked about, you know, doing remote production that way it is it is staggering that you can come up with, you know, that, yeah, that level of quality for sure. In terms of I mean, is 5g, Doug, it is 5g, a real thing and venues right now, uh,


Doug Lodder  

yeah, so, we're publicly traded, so I can't talk about everything. But we do have press out on 5g upgrades we done for Verizon, and a handful of venues. You know, and what's really interesting about 5g in these venues is is one, you know, it requires the wireless carriers to make an investment of time and time and money and of technology. But a lot of the wireless carriers these days are now distribution or content companies. Right. And so you know Bryson's got a big deal with the NFL, so stadiums were actually one of their first big pushes And the first game of this year was held at Soldier Field, which is a Boingo partner. And you know, they did a big commercial spot, they put 5g everywhere. And so there's emphasis around sports for more than just the reasons that you kind of think of intuitively, which is I want my customers to go there and have a great experience. There's a lot of cross marketing cross selling that that they're going to do through distribution or through content. And so I think sports is going to be a huge focus. It is, you know, the, like Class A of content at the moment, because it's the only one that is really keeping people paying a monthly service fee to whoever they're paying. And so, right now, live sports, live sports. And so, I think that's going to drive a lot of investment because, you know, there's one, there's a need to do 5g, you can't just turn it on in your marketing department. You got to turn it on everywhere. And, well, well, he started the marketing department and then he migrated


Michael Davies  

Install first in the market with the audio


Doug Lodder  

department starts first and then the actual folks who operate the network of second. And so yeah, I think sports is going to be a big push and blue though,


Michael Davies  

isn't it? Like 5g, like we're everything we're talking about can be the glue of of all this stuff, right? I mean, it's low latency. I can use it, you know, we can use it for production. You know, you can use it to make the fan experience better. I mean, I promise here is is pretty crazy. I mean, and some of this stuff we could even do. We couldn't even do now without 5g, right. I mean, like, you know, I mean, five G's, the nice new shiny object. But I think we're just getting to the point of where, you know, LTE was supposed to be. So I mean, none of this next area has to wait.


Doug Lodder  

3g is still turned on in many locations. So we're not even on 3g yet. So I think the limitation with 5g is really just going to be how quickly they they feel comfortable spending on the rollout and how confident they are and their ability to generate some sort of ROI on the investment in I think working with partners like you, and helping them see why the investment makes sense, because it creates more revenue from them from you is is certainly something that that has to take place. But the carriers are not known for moving at rapid pace, they tend to kind of put it out there, try it, you know, do a couple different strategies at a time, but it'll happen. It's it's going to move it's going to move as quickly as 4g did, but there's commitment it's going to happen.


Danny Keens  

But the I mean, the thing is, is that they'll be specific use cases for 5g there'll be total no brainers. Right? And you have to really understand the mechanics of of suppose the, the the things that are that are not quite about 5g to understand what the opportunity is. And what I mean by that is like we all know that like 5g, going through walls of 5g, you know, at speed, like if you're in a car going, you know, 65 miles an hour. It those sorts of things can be difficult when it comes to like cell towers. But if you're in a sports arena, and there's no walls and it's a closed environment, you've only got Couple, you've got one cell tower that can sort of, you know, service the whole arena, there's really crazy stuff you'll be able to do. And so 4g will still be a really important part of how we all communicate. And separate. There's definitely pockets of the sort of the 5g use cases that are going to change the way that fans consume sports.


Michael Davies  

But Andrea, do we have to wait for 5g for a lot of this stuff? I mean, like, it seems like we might be able to ride the rails of what's already out there. To start innovating. We we hit any walls yet? 


Andrea Berry  

Not really. Right? Not really.

We'll just make it better. And I'm hoping more efficient. Yeah, you know, I'm hoping more efficient, but we haven't stopped. Let's see not sorry to interrupt.


Doug Lodder  

We're, we're seeing some of these early use cases being deployed in a very closed pilot type environment. And the general feedback you get is this is good, but it's going to be awesome, right? So I think it's It's It's good, it's good enough. But if you have low latency, what the developers could do with that extra tick?


Danny Keens  

 What what are some of the use cases? Like? Are there certain things that stand out when you think about how people are trialing five? J.


Doug Lodder  

So I think, you know, gambling is going to be big. There's a lot of work being done behind the scenes to make gambling work. And there's going to be a lot of pragmatism and the way it's rolled out for obvious reasons. But I think you're you're looking at the platforms that exist today, especially with food and beverage, and concessions, as ways that that we are taking a transaction from a fan and delivering something in return for that transaction. And how hard can we push those platforms to do something that is not exactly like a bet would be, but I think that's the view today is looking at those types of platforms as the alpha to what gambling will eventually be.


Andrea Berry  

It adds to their overall experience. I think that if the fan is getting something faster, quicker Newer it adds to their experience.


Michael Davies  

So they're gonna pay for it, then they'll pay for it. Yeah. Is that what you're finding Doug to? Who will pay for it? The fan?


Doug Lodder  

The fans will pay for the betting or the fans? No, no, no fans will


Michael Davies  

pay for the service to be, like faster. That's that's a value to them. I mean, like when, when when a stadium, puts this stuff in, and you say, Okay, well, maybe Andrew and I will use it to make tea. Andrew, Dan and I are going to use it to make TV because now we don't have to put wires out. You're going to use it. You know, the you're going to provide it for food and beverage and gambling. I mean, I'm just wondering like, Is this an investment that that the stadiums are going to put in? It's just going to be expected or or is this something that the fan is going to pay a surcharge on their ticket or like how's that all going to work?


Doug Lodder  

So if if, if I'm a venue and we communicate this to venues a lot, if I'm a venue, I'm not going to sit around and wait for someone else to pay for my strategy. I want to go own that strategy and put the money in and Go make the investment myself as much as I can, there are some investments you can make with 5g because the carriers on the spectrum and they have to cooperate with you in some way. But as far as you know, the the, the fans will pay for it or someone else will pay for it. To me that's a bit of a foolish strategy and that you're really kind of waiting for someone else to help you make a bunch of money. And you know, we were talking backstage about how there's some times reluctance in this industry to just make a bet. Go with it and just go, you know, figure out, you know, you have a good idea of how you might make money, and maybe you got to make some adjustments along the way. But especially in the big pro sports here in the US there, there seems to be this hesitation around making investment. And maybe it's because they're so used to selling every square inch of real estate and every single one of these venues that they don't feel like that they should pay for anything.


Danny Keens  

But to treat it like the internet in connectivities is like a utility now it's like it's like power and you know, lighting and


Michael Davies  

the power company. Money for sure so yes


Danny Keens  

you can no one's gonna pay for faster connection like this


Doug Lodder  

yeah you the power the water company doesn't show up with a bunch of pipes when you're building the stadium and pull your pipes


Andrea Berry  

they may pay for it and ticket price


Michael Davies  

yeah well I'm really happy we ended up here and Doug you started but let's let's talk just just finalize things is ok so the decade of innovation right all these things are becoming Fast and Furious. We get to use these AI dream it do it. What kind of mindset does companies individuals, like have to have to take advantage of this? You talked about be willing to take the risk willing to take a bet. Andrea you and I worked for a guy that that was never afraid to take a bet. David Hill, what kind of mindset you have to have to take advantage of this stuff.


Andrea Berry  

I think not being afraid to be innovative. And realizing that whatever you're doing, you've got to make it so it becomes the norm and Think the fear has to go away of being innovative? You know, I don't know, what do you think?


Danny Keens  

I think that I mean that, you know, a lot of talk about technology and a lot of talk about like innovation or stuff. But I still firmly believe that the way to win is, is to be creative. And it's the creatives, it's the implementation of the technology that absolutely is the most important piece. I mean, I work with some of the smartest engineers and developers that are on the planet, right? Like they the sort of guys who they'll blow your mind, but it's the creatives who in find ways to implement the technology and the stuff that they building that really rule the roost because that's how you get like really great like fan market fit for anything you building.


Doug Lodder  

And the only thing I would add is don't be afraid to fail. Right and some of these beds aren't aren't going to pay off. Some of them will be big and they won't pay off. But don't be afraid to fail. And, you know, do a lot of homework on technology because the lowest price is almost always Always not the best option. You always get what you pay for in technology. And I'm always blown away. When I hear reasoning for decisions being made, and it's like, well, it's just that they gave us the best deal. And it's like, Oh, geez. So you know, like, companies do a pretty good job of evaluating technology through pretty rigorous decision making processes. And I don't think that's infiltrated the sports category yet. So I'd say, don't be afraid to fail. And be smart about what decisions you do make and who you wind up with,


Andrea Berry  

and continue to tell a good story. Right,


Michael Davies  

guys, it's been a great panel, Andrea, Danny, Doug, thank you guys very much. And looking forward to seeing what this decade of innovation brings.

 

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