16 Sep AT&T uses 5G for holographic ESPN interviews | Light Reading
DALLAS The future is here: AT&T is using 5G technology to bring TNT’s Sports Emmy Award-winning NBA studio team and ESPN’s NBA COUNTDOWN onto the NBA campus at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla. through unique holo interviews during the NBA Eastern and Western Conference Finals.
These first-of-its-kind holo interviews, powered by 5G technology, will allow viewers at home to see an analyst appear interviewing a player as if they are in the same room. But in fact, the analysts will be captured in WarnerMedia Studios in Atlanta, home to TNT’s studio shows including Inside the NBA, and in Los Angeles, home to ESPN’s NBA COUNTDOWN, and delivered using 5G technology to a specialized system in Orlando which allows them to appear in near real-time with lifelike clarity.
During interviews, AT&T will be using 5G to enable NBA players and analysts to interact naturally, standing or sitting, with full eye contact, as though they were physically together in the same location, talking all things NBA Playoffs and more.
Following its recent milestone of nationwide sub 6 5G, AT&T is incredibly proud to not only be the Official 5G Wireless Network of the NBA, but to also showcase how AT&T 5G can one-day further enhance and enable fan experiences that fit within today’s environment of COVID-19 restrictions.
“These 5G-enabled holo interviews allow us, and our friends at TNT, ESPN and the NBA to connect and interact with players despite physical distance,” said David Christopher, executive vice president and general manager AT&T Mobility. “This showcases yet another way 5G technology can be used in the future to bring fans closer to the game.”
“This cutting-edge 5G technology enables us to seamlessly connect and engage with players in real-time regardless of physical location,” said Matt Mosteller, Vice President of Content, Turner Sports. “We’re looking forward to incorporating these 5G-enabled holo interviews into our studio coverage and leveraging the dynamic opportunity it presents.”
“Since the start of our partnership last year, AT&T has continually brought an innovative mindset to enhance the fan experience,” said Kerry Tatlock, Senior Vice President, Head of Marketing Partnerships, NBA. “AT&T creating a next-gen experience by bringing popular ESPN and Turner NBA pregame shows to the restart through holographic interviews with players is the latest example of this commitment, which directly benefits the fan.”
Since AT&T’s partnership with the NBA began, AT&T has been bringing the power of 5G to various events and activations across the country. Earlier this year, AT&T brought 5G to NBA All-Star for the first time, including at NBA Crossover and via the AT&T 5G Courtside Cam which shared unique, live camera angles directly from AT&T Slam Dunk. AT&T and the NBA were the first to broadcast a professional sports event in 5G at the 2019 MGM Resorts NBA Summer League. AT&T also previously worked with Turner and the NBA during the 2019 NBA Tip-Off broadcast to deliver virtual side-by-side access to TNT’s broadcast of Candace Parker through a volumetric 3D experience powered by AT&T 5G.
AT&T is the Presenting Partner of the NBA’s post-game press conferences throughout the Playoffs and the broadcasts of the Eastern and Western Conference Finals.