Magic Leap Partners With NBA

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Mixed reality startup Magic Leap announced on Tuesday its first sports partnership — a collaboration with NBA Digital and Turner that will bring next-generation 3D basketball viewing experiences through the new Magic Leap One and a newly created companion NBA App.

Fans will be able to watch NBA games with features that overlay data into their viewing experience, with screens placed all around their environment, Magic Leap managing director Jeff Ruediger wrote. While fans won’t be able to watch live games using the augmented reality headset at first, a curated list of archived NBA games and highlights will be available.

“This partnership will allow us to bring fans a completely new, intimate experience that has never been seen in sports,” Ruediger wrote. “Using Magic Leap’s Screens platform, fans will be able to summon multiple, virtual screens into their field of view. When paired with Magic Leap’s Digital Lightfield technology and spatial computing, these screens can be shown at any size, and in any location combined with supplemental graphics that allow fans to enjoy their favorite stats, replays and commentary — all without missing the game action.”

The Magic Leap One will begin shipping later this year, and when it was announced in December, the company provided a glimpse of what watching sports on multiple screens with its glasses would look like.

“The hope is that someday, you might watch an NBA game play out in 3-D right on your dining room table,” he wrote.

“Eventually, the game could be available streaming on your coffee table as though you were a giant looking into the arena from above,” Jeff Marsilio, the NBA’s senior vice president of global media distribution, told Recode. “Those are some ideas, those are things that we’re working towards. [They’re] not quite ready but actually more possible than you might think.”

NBA commissioner Adam Silver also spoke of the Magic Leap partnership at Recode’s Code Media conference.