Brian Lara
Brian Lara

The 13th edition of Indian Premier League (IPL) is being played without crowds or the usual glamour due to coronavirus pandemic but former West Indies skipper Brian Lara feels that the use of new technology innovations have created a seamless viewing experience for the fans.

Augmented reality (AR) graphics have provided a big, bold visual spectacle in the stadium and even brought back the fans in an unconventional and creative way.

Also, next-generation Virtual Studios built on Epic's Unreal Engine have been deployed to give a unique environment to present the match coverage and high-level analysis.

"All the effort put in by everyone at Star Sports has made this Dream11 IPL a very special one with exciting uninterrupted cricket. The in-stadia ambience and new technology used has helped to create a seamless viewing experience and I am sure the fans are enjoying it," Lara told ANI.

A Fan Wall has been created which gives an opportunity to thousands of fans to connect live to the game and watch together in a virtual group.

The broadcast integrates live and curated fan reactions, giving die-hard IPL fans from across the world a platform to support their heroes from the comfort of their homes.

The former West Indies skipper said that production has been on a different level in the modern-day cricket.

"The fans from all across the globe appearing on the giant screens makes me happy that millions are still glued to their screens. I started watching cricket in the 70s and 80s and played in the 90s but the game and its production is on a different level today," said Lara.

The virtual studio has an immersive mixed reality LED stage which allows presenters to teleport to the ground for face to face conversations with presenters and players via a Zero Density graphics engine that doesn't break a single social distancing rule.

Even the physical demo pitch can have AR graphics overlaid via tracked cameras. The Windies legend said the technology innovations like these have helped him dissect every facet of the game in the studio.

"With the help of new technology, we dissect every facet of the game on Select Dugout is a huge eye-opener for me. Wish I had that knowledge when I played," said Lara.

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Free Press Journal