Intel plan to use the 2020 Tokyo Olympics to change the face of sport using 5G.

There’s a theme emerging in the world of technology in sport.

For virtual reality, augmented reality, mixed reality, 4k video and live streaming – and pretty much every other use of technology you can think of, too – the game changer will be faster internet and the advent of commercially available 5G.

We may have just had an Olympic Games, but we all know that’s where plenty of the innovation comes from, and in two years time, at the Tokyo Games in 2020, that’s where Intel plan to really bring 5G to life.

“Fans may be able to take in the action using virtual reality powered by Intel True VR from their TV, headset or wireless device, provided through rights holding broadcasters, running on transformed 5G networks capable of delivering massive amounts of data at multi-gigabit speeds,” Aicha Evans, SVP and chief strategy officer at Intel, is quoted as saying in Mobile World Live.

“Intel and other Olympic partners may offer the latest iteration of 5G communications for vehicles, which already have achieved data speeds of up to 1 Gb/s for 4K-resolution video communications with a vehicle traveling at 30 km/h,” she said, showing what the technology is already capable of, with two years to go.

That’s only on the spectator and fan side of the event, of course. There are other hugely advantageous uses for higher speed internet on the athlete performance side, too: where wearable tech, data and motion sensors can help coaches to train athletes in real time, providing feedback on power and technique and seeing exactly what needs to be worked on or tweaked before the main event. AR / VR simulations, AI, and drones can all play apart, and with faster internet comes greater potential for excellence.

The Olympic Games are often the bringer of a new technology, and many use the Summer Games as the driver. They come along every four years: that’s a long time in technology and it means you really feel the change.

But today, with so much technology like VR / AR and live-streaming emerging and seemingly on the verge of becoming standard everyday features in our lives, it could well be the 2020 Games and the birth of commercial 5G that finally tips it all over the edge.

About author

Chris McMullan
Chris McMullan 836 posts

Chris is a sports journalist and editor of Digital Sport - follow him on Twitter @CJMcMullan_

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