Entain and Verizon Media have documented the start of a global innovation alliance that is tasked with developing new opportunities across interactive sports and entertainment.

The pair will collaborate to develop an immersive proof of concept virtual reality experience that intends to combine live sports viewing with interactive layers of sports data and gaming. 

Furthermore, Entain will also work alongside Verizon Media to develop concepts for new formats with emerging technologies, such as 5G, virtual reality, and augmented reality, to bring experiences in immersive content and gaming to sports betting and gambling. 

Along with betting on the Entain platforms on live streaming sports events, the goal is to create realistic, immersive experiences for sports fans, such as being in the stadium, participating in play, competing and betting on outcomes on the Entain platforms. 

“This new alliance takes the collaboration between our two companies to a new level and will allow us both to maximise new opportunities across sports betting, content and entertainment,” noted Guru Gowrappan, CEO of Verizon Media.

“Together, we are building the next-generation of content experiences for sports and gaming fans. Our world-first 5G-enabled production studios in LA and London, creative technology teams and Verizon Media’s Immersive platform, that enables extended reality content to be created and distributed across digital channels at scale, allow partners like Entain to bring next-level immersive and interactive experiences to their customers.” 

The new alliance coincides with initial findings from new research for Entain by YouGov, revealing that the use of technology is increasingly shaping consumer behaviours in gaming and entertainment around the world, notably in the United States and Australia.

“To win in the future we need to understand where consumers will be in five, ten years’ time and work with other global businesses also investing in that,” said Shay Segev, CEO of Entain.

“We envisage consumers meeting at a game with friends, who could in fact be elsewhere, using virtual reality headsets to watch, interact and share the experience together and, potentially, compete between themselves at half time or feel like they’re on the pitch with the players.”