Beyond internal use, this information could also be used by broadcasters during television broadcasts to give viewers a more detailed analysis of what’s going on. However, there could be issues with teams using the data for their own use versus releasing that information to the public. It’s something that the NFL is dealing with as it tests its own new player-tracking system this season with small RFID tags embedded inside the shoulder pads of every player.
Panasonic and SAP aren’t the only companies trying to track athletes during games. Last year, the MLS installed three cameras in every stadium to track player movement. The NBA did something similar, too, when it signed a deal with STATS last year to gauge player fatigue, movement and other information not previously quantifiable.
This is yet another example of new technology being used in sports to help make strategic changes and improve player technique. We’re seeing it already in the NFL, with players and coaches using Microsoft’s Surface tablet to review past plays on the bench. And at CES, this trend was prevalent from the sensor-laden basketball that helped improve our jump shot to learning about the German national soccer team using wearable trackers to make important strategic in-game decisions during the World Cup.