Sinclair Broadcast Group has teamed up with Deloitte to launch a new ‘virtual community in the Metaverse’ for sports fans. While it currently remains unclear whether this new virtual community will eventually make it possible to watch live sports in the Metaverse, it semes to be initially designed as a complementary service and experience.
Sinclair Broadcast Group is heavily involved in live sports. After all, the company not only owns a number of Bally Sports RSNs through Diamond Sports Group, but it also owns the Tennis Channel, in addition to Marquee Sports Network and Yes Network regional sports networks.
Now, Sinclair Broadcast Group is preparing to take its viewing community into the Metaverse. Deloitte and Sinclair Broadcast Group have announced plans to launch a new metaverse sports fan community experience. According to the announcement, and by leveraging Epic Games’ Unreal Engine, the community is designed “to redefine sports viewership and experiences through the metaverse.”
What that means exactly, is a little less clear. While the announcement is somewhat limited in detail, the two companies have released a video as an example of what to expect. The demonstration video is of a BNP Paribas Open experience and is designed to complement Sinclair’s Tennis Channel coverage.
The short demonstration shows how community members will be able to walk around a venue, including accessing backstage areas like the locker room, interact with other community members, play mini-games, and so on.
Based on the limited information available so far, it would seem that this virtual community is designed more to be a complementary experience rather than an all-encompassing one. At least for now.
The announcement does explain that this is only a step in “Sinclair’s plans to deepen engagement with its viewing community and drive new revenue streams through experiential gaming.”
Sinclair Broadcast Group and Deloitte’s new virtual community is expected to officially launch the week of March 6th, presumably in time for March Madness, so interested sports fans shouldn’t have to wait too long to find out more.