Israeli start-up to allow sports fans to watch 3D games in real time

The need for volumetric video has been amplified greatly this year by the coronavirus pandemic, which has left many fans aching to again experience live entertainment.

The stands are seen empty after the decision of the Saudi Ministry of Sports, following an outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), at King Saud University Stadium, in Riyadh (photo credit: REUTERS)
The stands are seen empty after the decision of the Saudi Ministry of Sports, following an outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), at King Saud University Stadium, in Riyadh
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Israeli tech start-up IMD Technologies signed a joint agreement with British start-up Condense Reality to develop a system capable of creating and streaming volumetric video in real time, the company announced.
Until now, the tech - which captures volumetric video and allows users to move around the space being filmed and streamed and see it from any angle - required fixed studios with green screens and many precisely calibrated cameras to work.
While other volumetric video start-ups are already being used in various manners in the sports world today, no company has yet overcome the challenges of streaming live volumetric video.
IMDT has developed sensors capable of processing and streaming high-quality video and depth using artificial intelligence.
As part of the agreement, Condense Reality provide a program tool that creates volumetric videos using depth and video data, which IMDT's sensors provide.
Though the company is currently fixated mainly on the world of sports, the product aims to eventually revolutionize the way viewers watch all live entertainment, enabling them to watch holographic tabletop versions of live performances and move around the stadium using a variety of compatible VR headsets. 
In addition, the tech could also allow viewers to control the cameras on the on their television screens. Condense Reality CEO Nick Fellingham told sports website SVG Europe in November that “It may turn out that tabletop AR isn’t the thing that people really jump on and in fact what they want is to be able to control the cameras using an Xbox controller on a standard TV." 
"The way that would work is you can move your camera around, or set it to follow your favorite boxer, or rotate it around yourself so [it would be like you are] flying a virtual drone around the boxing match,” he explained.
However, before the technology can really be integrated into worldwide market, 5G mobile networks would need to become much more widely available. 

The need for volumetric video has been amplified greatly this year by the coronavirus pandemic, which has left many fans aching to again experience live entertainment.
In August, Condense Reality received nearly 1.5 million pounds in grant money from the 5G Create Project. In October, the company reported raising over 875 thousand additional punds in seed funding, announcing that it would ensure it be able to advance its R&D capabilities and commercialize its tech over the next 12 months.
According to Fellingham, "Our prototype, as of today, can capture two human beings and stream them in the format [of a tabletop sized hologram viewed using a smartphone].”