How a 73 year old organization wins at innovation

The companies that win at innovation and successfully scale emerging technologies are the ones that experiment early and know which signs of growth to look at. The National Basketball Association might be a 73 year old organization, it is definitely this type of company.

Having worked closely with NBA at Twitter, not only were they one of the first sports league globally to fully embrace the power of real time public conversation for their audience engagement, they also understood quickly that it would grow the fandom of each team, allow players to express their personalities off the court, extend the reach of their TV broadcast as well as increase the value of sponsorship for their brand partners.

The NBA as also been an early partner of NextVR. With less than 1% of basketball fans globally ever setting foot in an NBA arena, the league turned to technology for ways to replicate the unique court-side experience.

Here is what I have seen them do over the last 4 years working in partnership with the NBA:

  • The relentless appetite to innovate comes from the top. This helps identify trends early and permission to experiment.
  • Everyone comes to new opportunity with an open mind and is willing to let the partner (in my case Twitter and NextVR) guide the project with their expertise.
    The NBA sets the standards and the direction they are looking for in the partnership and then they get out of the way allowing the experts to do their best job.
  • Once the model works, they scale quickly.
  • Finally, once the program is scaling, collaborative creative thinking brings new idea to constantly evolve new products.

Hear more about the NBA innovation philosophy from Adam Silver the NBA commissioner himself at the AT&T Shape conference which took place on June 23 2019.

Marie Sornin

From mobile 1st to 5G

The annual #NBAAllStar weekend just wrapped up.
Beyond the dunks and three pointers, the NBA All Star is also a celebration of the NBA’s technology innovation. This year one of the key innovation theme on everybody’s mind was 5G.

Interviewed by Peter Kafka, Executive Editor of Recode during the NBA All Star 2019 tech summit, Randall L. Stephenson Chairman, CEO and President of AT&T predicts that 5G will be operational in major US cities in 3 years.

Even if some experts view this timing as slightly too optimistic, with 5G, what is already true for Gen Z will become a fact for everyone: There will not be a difference between our digital world and our real world.

Content will be transformed into new types of experiences; ones that will be seamlessly and contextually integrated into our lives, fully immersive and personalized. Believe it or not, this will all be made possible thanks to zero latency.
No latency seems like an obvious necessity for applications such as self driving cars, but why would it be so important to media applications?

No latency is a monumental change for media

No latency means that 5G is taking data access, computing power and storage away from hardware and onto the cloud… which makes devices such as nReal light, the first ready-to-wear mixed reality glasses possible…. this type of hardware, paired with a 5G phone and network will finally make digital, portable, immersive and augmented live experiences real for everyone!

nReal light.
nReal Light at CES 2019

One finishing thought about 5G:
Remember your landline?
According to Randall L. Stephenson this is how you will feel about your wifi 3 to 5 years from now…
This is how monumental the change brought by 5G is!

Marie Sornin

Source:
* Statista 2018: global mobile video traffic in terabytes per month
** Statista 2017: US TV consumption in hours per month