It’s no surprise that as technology becomes an even more integral part of our daily lives, it has progressively made its way into the wide world of sports. With most of the globe fixated on Brazil for the past few weeks, it’s only fitting to discuss ways in which the Internet-of-Things is playing a role in “connecting the World Cup.”
A recent piece from the Creators Project describes various technological advances that are helping push this year’s World Cup forward. Let’s start with the next-generation, connected turnstiles being used to increase speed and efficiency. These state-of-the art turnstiles have no need for in-person ticket takers as they use cameras and connected technology to validate tickets and grant entry to thousands of fans without worrying about long lines and waiting times. The turnstiles are also connected to emergency services, allowing them to be lowered in a matter of seconds in the event of an emergency evacuation.
Automated turnstiles are just the beginning – FIFA has invested in remote-controlled ‘security guards,’ that look like little drones. These security guards are being used to add in an extra level of security and safety for fans, and are also dealing with suspicious packages and threats that come with such a high-profile sporting event. Players at the World Cup are jumping on the connected, wearable technology trend by wearing sensors that track a variety of health and athletic performance statistics. From heart monitoring to speed and precise movements, sensors are helping trainers and coaches keep track of their athletes’ health and movement patterns in order to increase the chances of winning.
Speaking of winning, the World Cup has also implemented new goal line technology that has cameras to track ball play within millimeters. Once that ball crosses the goal line, a radio signal is sent to a referee’s watch signaling the goal in less than a second – talk about precision and timeliness – especially since there was an issue with missed goal calls just a few years back.
While FIFA has implemented technology to make this World Cup connected as possible, let’s not forget about the thousands of fans who will be sharing data and information from the games, connecting with their families and friends around globe. IoT is certainly making a splash at the World Cup and it’s only a matter of time before we start seeing other sports like football, baseball and basketball using similar connected technologies to enhance their game and connect their fans. Without reliable satellite and cellular connections, like those provided by KORE’s seamless global network, connecting the World Cup and connecting the future sporting events wouldn’t be possible.