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    There is potential for virtual reality NBA games.This is what you are seeing

    Jabari Young wearing an Oculus Quest 2 device.

    Source: Java Bali Young

    Boston Celtics head coach Ime Udoka emerged from the team’s bench and he was blocking my view before I knew it. Indiana Pacers coach Rick Carlisle was far enough to see Cole Haan’s shoes and looked at Lance Stephenson’s three pointers from an angle never seen before.

    This is just part of my recent experience watching NBA games with a virtual reality headset on.

    The National Basketball Association offers virtual courtside seats Meta$ 299 Oculus Quest 2 device.Headsets were one of the most popular Christmas gifts In 2021, it shows that people seem to be more advanced than ever in trying out virtual reality. Companies are also trying to keep an eye on content by creating VR versions of apps and games.

    Oculus Quest 2 virtual reality headset and controller taken on September 28, 2020.

    Phil Barker | Future | Getty Images

    The NBA experience is free and available on Meta’s Horizontal Venues platform, a free software download for Oculus headsets. People look like digital avatars, like their own cartoon version, watching NBA games from a courtside perspective.Not Jack Nicholson’s Los Angeles Lakers seat Crypto.com arena Or Spike Lee’s seat in Madison Square Garden, but it’s almost a replica of the real thing.

    From a business perspective, this agreement may give the NBA new media rights. This is important because the local sports network is struggling.

    Meanwhile, Meta, formerly known as Facebook, is leveraging partnerships with sports providers such as the NBA, WWE, and Premier League to provide people with new reasons to experiment with virtual reality.

    Mark Zuckerberg’s company has invested $ 10 billion in Metaverse. This is a virtual world that he believes will become the standard for social networking, games and even work.

    Meta sent the Oculus 2 headset to CNBC last month. I experienced the January 10th NBA Courtside Game between the Celtics and the Pacers. Here’s what you need to know:

    Celtics’ Jalen Brown in a basket between Pacers’ Jeremy Lamb (left) and Myles Turner (right) at a regular season NBA basketball match at TD Garden in Boston on January 10, 2022. going now.

    Jim Davis | The Boston Globe | Getty Images

    Experience is not “garbage”

    First, if you live in a market where NBA games are broadcast on TV, you need to know that watching is banned. The NBA uses RSN feeds for League Pass products, and the local market is subject to the same nasty restrictions that occur elsewhere.

    As soon as you join the game, you’ll notice that other avatars are having live discussions. The closeness of action also catches your attention. Engagement with nearby fans actually makes you feel like you’re in the courtyard, so you can immerse yourself in the experience here.

    There are two levels in the digital room where you can watch the game. The first level is usually where the crowd is chatting and watching, and this evening I counted about 15 people in the room in the first quarter.

    The balcony level is quiet for a more private setting and the views are amazing.

    Don’t be afraid to start a conversation with an avatar with a microphone turned on, especially if you need help navigating a room that looks like two levels in a private social club.

    The Celtics were 23-18 years old in the first quarter, so one avatar approached me and asked for viewing assistance. At first it was confusing because the stream was good, but it became clear that the real person behind the avatar had poor connectivity or was restricted due to local power outage rules.

    It urged him to label the NBA’s Metaverse experience as a “trash can.” After a while, I asked another avatar standing next to me what he thought of the experience.

    “This is a dope,” replied an avatar named “Tatley.” “They need to get this for football.”

    The scenic view of Boston that appeared during the break was also very impressive, giving me the feeling of being in the city where the game is playing.

    Negative: glitch and image quality

    “Yeah, man! Are you okay?” I heard one avatar ask another.

    The avatar in question collapsed and did not react. The person in the Metaverse appeared to have a seizure.

    Avatar eventually regained his appearance and began talking, but the glitch was certainly strange.

    Since the controller is the Metaverse’s hand, it can be strange that the hands and arms of nearby avatars appear to be out of alignment.

    In the fourth quarter, Stevenson nailed the three-pointer and Pacers forward Torrey Craig transformed the layup to cut the Celtics lead to 3, 71-68.

    It was fun to witness a close sequence, but the relatively poor image quality eventually became noticeable. TV and video providers have ruined viewers with high-definition games. Therefore, the slight difference in quality is immediately noticeable.

    NBA is working with a VR production company Media monk View the game on the Oculus platform.

    During the NBA’s pandemic “bubble” season in Orlando, the company used Sony’s FX6 camera. Approximately $ 6,000, Shoot a VR game. However, this season I’m shooting the game with a Sony FX9 camera. About $ 11,000..

    However, Meta is frequently experimenting with the resolution and frame rate of VR games that are still technically in “beta” or test mode. Media Monks has placed five cameras in the NBA Arena, but added a sixth to the Celtics-Pacers game to capture the sense of space.

    One FX9 camera is on the announcer’s table, providing a front row view. FX9 cameras are also on each backboard. One is used to capture distant shots and the other is used for roving.

    The camera switches the angle during the game. This is annoying, but it’s necessary if your coach accidentally blocks your view. For example, every time Udoka went to the center court, Udoka’s feet appeared on my face.

    Notable moderators are former NBA forward Richard Jefferson, but comments are sometimes dull. And trivia quizzes are useless.

    Meta uses a former NBA player, such as Jefferson, to interact with avatars participating in the courtside experience. Also, in some contests, commentators may appear in the room as the actual avatar for chatting with fans.

    Let’s see how exciting it really is when it happens.

    A screenshot of Jabari’s home screen reminiscent of an NBA virtual reality event on the Oculus Quest 2 platform.

    Jabari Young | CNBC

    Finally, the game choice may be better. The Celtics-Pacers were okay, but the Marquee match is more attractive, can attract more people, and is an even more social experience.

    The next two NBA VR games on Oculus January 17 — Covid’s postponement allows — featuring Oklahoma Thunder, who plays the Dallas Mavericks of Mark Cuban.The January 22 In the VR experience, Sacramento Kings plays NBA champion Milwaukee Bucks.

    They are not necessarily must-see games.

    What’s next

    Meta’s Oculus Quest 2 virtual reality headset.

    T3 Magazine | Future | Getty Images

    Shaw said the new Oculus Quest 2 and its distribution have made a big difference since then. He said the device is a popular gift because it’s lighter, looks better, and cheaper than its $ 399 sister device.

    “Now we are in the basic moment of building and learning experiences,” Shaw said.

    I asked if the NBA experience remained free, and the show didn’t rule it out.

    “I think we can redefine our business model,” he explained. “It doesn’t have to be pay-per-view, but it’s an economy that can be built around the viewing experience.”

    He said, “You can see them wanting to price tickets, but it’s by leagues and media companies, if the VR experience can evolve to truly mimic the courtside. It’s a decision to be made. “

    Ultimately, it’s up to the NBA to charge consumers. The league did not make the official available to CNBC to discuss it.

    The NBA remains silent on this, but Meta is looking forward to it.

    Shaw envisions immersive VR advertising, allowing users to purchase avatar jerseys from the Metaverse NBA store. Then, for an additional fee, a private live screening option. Have ideas on seating experiences and VIP options in the courtyard of the sports bar, such as NBA legends and watching games against celebrities.

    “I think sponsorship can be redefined,” Shaw said. “Brand activation in historically limited locations suddenly becomes more accessible and customizable for the Metaverse.”

    — CNBC’s Steve Kovach contributed to this article.

    There is potential for virtual reality NBA games.This is what you are seeing

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