T-Mobile kicked off the 2023 T-Mobile Accelerator program, focused on startups, developers and entrepreneurs building immersive fan experiences while watching their favorite sports team or attending an event. Over 70 companies from around the world applied, and T-Mobile chose nine to further develop their technologies.
For decades, people have gone to matches, concerts and other events with little innovation to enhance the experience beyond simply watching. Imagine a stadium filled with 5G-enabled drones capturing never-before-seen camera angles, first-person cameras letting thousands of fans experience what athletes are seeing in real-time, augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) experiences or 5G connected robots delivering concessions throughout a venue.
The Un-carrier believes the technologies developed by this year’s Accelerator participants paired with T-Mobile 5G will fundamentally change the way fans engage with sports and other events.
“We created the Accelerator program to give innovators a platform to bring their ideas to life using our technologies,” said John Saw, EVP and Chief Technology Officer, T-Mobile. “By leveraging T-Mobile 5G, this year’s group will have all the tools and support they need to expand their solutions and bring spectators at any event brand new immersive experiences.”
Participants in this year’s program include:
APP CATS LLC (Minneapolis, Minn.) — APP CATS’ CrowdSOLUTIONS creates unique opportunities to interact with fans through its 5G enabled live streaming platform, audience surveying tools and fan engagement rewards, which are all available as turn-key plug-ins or as a custom standalone platform.
CUE Audio (Denver, Colo.) — CUE Audio develops fan-first technology that uses in-venue speakers and fans’ mobile devices to routinely synchronize crowds of all sizes to capture the world’s largest simultaneous selfies, choreograph spectacular cell phone light shows, host multiplayer trivia games and more.
FansXR (Las Vegas, Nev.) — FansXR delivers an Xtended reality (XR) streaming platform using augmented AR, XR, and 360-degree video distributed to any digital device or Metaverse portal powered by 5G and edge compute technology. For sports and events, FansXR geolocates athletes in stadiums offering an augmented reality overview of performance stats, game data and more.
ForwARdgame (Berlin, Germany) — Since 2017 forwARdgame leverages the newest technologies to infuse the real world with virtual experiences and let people freely play in AR by physical activity.
Immersal (Helsinki, Finland) — Immersal’s Visual Positioning (VPS) technology can convert any city, venue or area into a spatial map that can support a variety of AR experiences, commercial functions and can be used by autonomous vehicles and robots servicing the area.
MeetMo (Los Angeles, Calif.) — MeetMo is a cloud-native platform connecting devices, people and ideas to facilitate real-time collaboration.
Mindfly (Tel Aviv, Israel) — MindFly is a fully automated First-Person-View (FPV) solution that lets fans see, hear and feel exactly what pro sports players and referees do during official games, exhibition games and behind-the-scenes training. Mindfly also captures, processes and distributes post-game highlights to social platforms and replays for live TV.
PixelFly (Minneapolis, Minn.) — PixelFly specializes in live FPV drone coverage for broadcast events and marketing activations leveraging custom drones developed in partnership with brands featuring the latest technology to deliver footage and experiences that aren’t possible with traditional, existing drone platforms.
Ydrive (Seattle, Wash.) — Ydrive empowers everyone to capture the world in photorealistic 3D with just a few smartphone images. Its AI platform generates lifelike digital twins and 3D maps, complete with stunning visuals, semantic understanding, and rich metadata.
Compatible with popular 3D applications, Ydrive is perfect for content creation, immersive gaming, movie production, architectural preservation, real estate, robotics, and more.
Since T-Mobile was the first in the U.S. to launch nationwide 5G in 2019, the T-Mobile Accelerator has worked with more than 30 startups specifically to drive 5G innovation and adoption across a variety of industries. Previous Accelerator participants include: Prisms VR, Beem, Stops, VictoryXR, Mawari, formsense and more.
T-Mobile is the leader in 5G, delivering the country’s largest, fastest and most awarded 5G network. The Un-carrier’s 5G network covers 325 million people across 1.9 million square miles – more than AT&T and Verizon combined. 265 million people nationwide are covered by T-Mobile’s super-fast Ultra Capacity 5G, and the Un-carrier plans to reach 300 million people with Ultra Capacity this year – nearly everyone in the country.