Over the past century, both the way that sports are played and how we watch them have undergone nearly inconceivable transformation. Through the use of television and the internet, technology has made it possible for billions of people to watch sports worldwide. It’s also had a significant influence on how sports are played, enabling for improved athletic performance and quicker, more interesting matches.
In this article, we’ll examine some of the most significant modifications that technology has made to how sports are played and viewed, ranging from the development of sports broadcasting to the influence of social media and cellphones.
The evolution of sports broadcasting
The development of broadcasting has undoubtedly had the biggest impact on sports that technology has had. In the 1920s, when stations transmitted live coverage of games like baseball and football, sports were first televised to a large audience. This would continue to be the standard up until the introduction of television in the 1930s.
In spite of the fact that owning a television was still fairly uncommon in the 1930s and 1940s, they were becoming increasingly popular by the 1950s, and by the beginning of the 1960s, more than 90% of US households had one. This had a significant impact on sports and made it possible for them to reach a larger audience than previously.
In the 1970s, satellite and cable television would significantly alter how sports broadcasting would progress going forward. This implied that sports-specific networks will start to appear, expanding their audience.
Instant replays, halftime performances, and player interviews all became a part of the package as sports television coverage developed over the ensuing decades. In the twenty-first century, television was available in digital and high definition, and on-demand services allowed viewers to watch whenever they wanted. Of course, there was also the effect of smartphones and social media, but we’ll get to that in a moment.
Improved equipment and sportswear
Thanks to safer equipment, lighter apparel, and the capacity to track performance using sophisticated data, technology has played a significant role in revolutionizing athletic performance.
Since the turn of the 20th century, a lot has changed in terms of the equipment utilized in many sports. Football, for instance, once employed the usage of heavy leather balls. Due to the increased difficulty and risk involved in heading the ball, synthetic balls that are significantly lighter and more accurate are now utilized almost everywhere.
Sports like tennis, where wooden rackets were replaced by carbon fiber rackets, saw the introduction of lighter, more precise equipment. Additionally, athletic apparel evolved to become lighter and more aerodynamic, which was especially helpful for sports like cycling.
Over the past few decades, not only have the tools and apparel used by athletes themselves evolved, but so have the fields on which they competed. This is especially true for sports like football, tennis, American football, and rugby that are played on grass.
When sports were played on grass fields, the weather had a lot to do with the outcome. Players may now enjoy immaculate conditions the majority of the time thanks to hybrid pitches, cutting-edge drainage technology, and retractable roofs.
The effects of social media and cellphones
Nothing has had a greater influence on how sports are consumed in the twenty-first century than cellphones and social media. Since the first models of smartphones appeared in the middle of the 2000s, a lot has changed with smartphones, and as bigger screens became the norm, more and more people began using their cellphones to watch live sports.This has made golf betting more popular in Canada and other international markets, making it easier for many players to wager.
Like many other facets of entertainment and culture, social media has obviously had a significant impact on sports as well. You may now follow the most recent results on social media and communicate directly with other fans and sportsmen.
In the upcoming decades, technology will have an impact on sports.
It seems obvious that technology such as VR, AR, and AI will start to play a much bigger role as we look toward the next decade and beyond, both in terms of aiding in athlete training and how fans will be able to enjoy watching sports.
The NBA has already started utilizing VR technology to give its viewers a taste of what it’s like to watch a game from courtside. Though this is only the beginning, other sports and organizations will soon begin implementing this technology to make them more participatory and entertaining for viewers. Even if it’s difficult to foresee how this will play out in the near future, AI is likely to be employed much more in sports broadcasting and training.