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NBA strengthens ‘basketball anywhere’ ethos with augmented reality game

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By John McCarthy | Media editor

October 16, 2017 | 3 min read

The NBA has embraced augmented reality as a means of immersing fans in the culture of shooting hoops no matter where they are.

NBA AR

NBA available on AR

The NBA claims to be the first US sports league to have released an AR game, giving it a reputable first in the space. The title is free on the Apple App Store and requires users to flick shots at the hoop using the phone’s inbuilt accelerometer. They are tasked with scoring as many throws as possible inside a 30 second window.

Melissa Rosenthal Brenner, NBA senior vice president, Digital Media, said: “We’ve always said that basketball can be played virtually anywhere – and today that takes on an expanded meaning.”

“Augmented reality presents a variety of fascinating engagement opportunities, so we hope our fans download the app and try out their skills wherever they might be.”

Once the app is on the phones of fans, there are plans to feed follow up experiences in throughout the season. There is a shareable aspect to the app with leaderboards seedable throughout iMessage and social media.

AR is the latest plaything of the marketing industry, all the top social media companies are tapping into augmented reality to drive partnerships with brands, this includes Facebook and Snapchat.

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