Business

Better view than courtside: Stanford basketball players don Google Glass

Image Credit: Happy A

You may not be a star basketball player, but now you can experience what its like to be one.

Players on the Stanford basketball team wore Google Glass while warming up for their most recent game. Leave it to Stanford to deck their athletes out with tech accessories.

People attending the event could view the Glass footage through CrowdOptics‘ technology platform. CrowdOptics analyzes where people point their mobile and wearable devices to identify activity hot spots, help people find their friends in a crown, and instantly connects Glass footage to Google Hangouts live video feeds.

Attendees could point their mobile device at the court and watch what the players saw. Fans could also join a Google hangout or view the stream through their own Glass.

Google Glass has had the tech world abuzz all year. There is still some skepticism about whether people will actually wear them in daily life, but developers have jumped at the opportunity to build a wide range of Glass apps and give the tech real world appeal.

There are now Glass apps for surgeons in the operating room, drivers,networking, getting public transit information, shopping, foreign language translation, disaster relief, and even getting real-time baseball game stats. 

Transmitting point-of-view footage from sports players is nothing new (GoPro, for example), which underscores the fact that fans like to feel immersed in games.

Professional tennis player Bethanie Mattek-Sands wore Google Glass at Wimbledon this year, which not only serves to connect her with fans, but also helps with her training — coaches can see the game from their players perspective and suggest improvements and alternatives.

VentureBeat writer John Koetsier, who coaches youth baseball and hockey, wrote “Glass could help coaches not just tell players what’s going wrong but also actually show them from their own perspective … which would be a very powerful visual validation of the need for adjustment.”

Improving physical fitness is one of the core drivers of the wearable movement. Popular wristbands like Nike’s Fuel Band and the FitBit, and smart watches like Samsung’s Galaxy Gear, give recreational and competitive athletes greater insight into their activities.

Samsung has even registered a patent that hints at its own Google Glass-style “sports glasses.”

So while you may never have the physical sensation of flying through the air with your hand cupped around a basketball, and slamming it into the basket as the crowd erupts into applause, you can at least see what it looks like through someone else’s eyes.

More information:

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