Sony Has Acquired the 3D Animation Company Beyond Sports
With the acquisition, Sony is aiming to provide a complete sports metaverse experience to users.
Sony has recently acquired Beyond Sports which specializes in leveraging real-world data to generate 3D animations. Following the acquisition, Sony is now in a position to deliver a full metaverse experience for sports matches in concert with technologies from other companies that are already in Sony’s portfolio.
Sony Hops into the Sports Metaverse Market
The acquisition plunges Sony into the sports metaverse market. The Beyond Sports tech can transform real data drawn from sports matches into metaverse representations. Although the actual cost of the acquisition hasn’t been disclosed, Nikkei estimates that it is worth as much as $70 million.
With Beyond Sports technology and that of Hawk-Eye Innovations, another Sony-owned tech company, the entertainment giant is now able to generate real-time content on various kinds of sports matches including baseball, basketball, football, and tennis.
Sony acquired Hawk-Eye Innovations in 2011. The company produces technology that enables the position of a ball to be pinpointed at any time. The Hawk-Eye Innovations technology has been used in the National Hockey League (NHL) and the National Football League (NFL).
Blending the two technologies from its acquisitions would enable Sony to create accurate digital representations of a court or field, complete with realistic ball and player movements.
Sony also owns Pulselive, a web company operating several sites for sports organizations and teams which could help with the distribution of its experiences to audiences. Pulselive could distribute Sony’s metaverse experiences and content on its sites to create a new revenue stream for Sony. The Pulselive network of sites could also help in popularizing this new format for sports content.
Sony could also leverage its PlayStation consoles to distribute its metaverse matches. The PlayStation VR 2 headset s set to launch in early 2023 and there is also the first-generation PSVR headset. Sony could use these to distribute immersive sports matches to sports enthusiasts in virtual reality.
This is not the first time that Sony is trying its hands at NFT (non-fungible tokens) and the metaverse. Sony recently filed patents for the use of non-fungible tokens as a means to track the history and ownership of the in-game assets in its games. Sony boss Kenichiro Yoshida has previously stated that the company’s first priority is to “create a metaverse around entertainment” by leveraging all the tools at its disposal.