Fox Sports is trying to make everything about the new MLB season seem as normal as possible, and what could be more normal than seeing virtual fans across your TV screen? FOX Sports shared the news in a short press release, saying they’ll use cutting-edge Pixatope software to add virtual fans to the broadcast, all in an effort to “deliver an elevated viewing experience to sports fans around the nation.”
Take a look at the demo video FOX shared featuring fake fans filling the stadium seats. At a glance, it looks perfectly normal, and as crowds start popping up here and there, it’s still hard to tell they’re just computer-generated graphics to trick you into thinking the live sports experience is back to normal.
The MLB is also providing a way for viewers to be a part of the action from home. “Cheer at the Ballpark” is a new interactive feature on the MLB app that lets you cheer for your team virtually. The option to log into the feature will pop up near the Gameday score graphic and on the team websites and social media.
The corresponding cheering recordings will then be blasted into the stadium and will carry over onto your TV through the broadcast for a more ‘authentic’ – although fabricated – experience, something soccer leagues have been implementing for months now.
“It’s not the same as sitting next to your best friends in the stands, but to create a sense of fan community and a sense of engagement and their favorite teams, it will help reinforce what will be a unique season,” said Chris Marinak, executive vice president of strategy, technology and innovation for MLB.
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