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This Take On Apple’s Vision Pro Gets Closer To The Mark

It has the potential to revolutionize everything about sports.

NCAA Womens Basketball: ACC Conference Tournament Semifinals-Duke vs Virginia Tech
 Mar 4, 2023; Greensboro, NC, USA; The Duke Blue Devils mascot performs during the second half against the Virginia Tech Hokies at Greensboro Coliseum. 
William Howard-USA TODAY Sports

When the Web started up, we’re sorry to say, the ACC didn’t get it. We can say that because we had to deal with a real moron there who said he “didn't have time for this crap,” the crap being the nascent Internet.

His job was to deal with the media but he had absolutely no realization that the ground was shifting beneath his feet. Now of course, like everyone else, he gets his news on his phone.

He gets it - now.

At least we hope he does. You good, Brian?

But he could have gotten it then, at the beginning, and that would have been huge for the ACC. For an analog, look at the brilliant job Dave Bradley has done with Duke Basketball’s social media presence. Duke understood that social media was causing major problems when Duke Hating was at its peak and addressed it in a highly intelligent manner. Now Duke’s social media sets the curve for all college sports.

They got it. They fixed it.

We’ve been thinking a lot and writing a bit about Apple’s newest product, the Vision Pro headset and how it might be used and how it might spark a similar media revolution to what we’ve seen since the debut of the World Wide Web. A lot of it is impossible to know because while we have some idea of what Apple’s device is capable of, no one knows yet what exactly will resonate (tradition dictates that the porn industry will sort it out first).

Take the Apple Watch for instance. When it debuted, it didn't really have a niche and it took a little while for it to emerge as a health and fitness device.

But it’s fairly easy to see how the Vision Pro will be used with sports. Over at this Arkansas site, Kent Smith does a much better job than we did of imagining how it will be used for sporting events - and how universities can make money off of this remarkable innovation.

Check this out:

“If a giant television screen isn’t enough, it can be adjusted to appear as if it’s on a 100-foot movie screen. Want to take things up a notch? Then change what you are seeing behind your screen. Watch the game on an IMAX sized screen by a lake at night surrounded by mountains if that’s your thing. Just change the settings and be transported there right away. Scroll a dial on the frame of the headset to determine whether a little bit of your living room shows or completely wipe away the site of your messy house or the plane you are flying on so you can relax and enjoy the game in a moment of peace...

“During the game, a friend can send you a 3D animation of a Razorback running through a pack of Collies and sending them crashing to the ground following a KJ Jefferson touchdown against A&M...You can then move things around to view that Hog run across the floor of your living room or back yard wiping out the Reveilles over and over from as many angles as you would like. It’s even possible to have files of a 3D Nick Saban sent to stand in your room and yell at the screen ‘That wouldn’t have happened if Jimbo Fisher had called that play!’ every time a team stops one an Alabama player behind the line of scrimmage. Sure, it’s not true, but it definitely is fun to see him say it so angrily.

“The biggest carrot in this basket is how it works with 3D technology. Sports fans can now fully immerse themselves in a realistic 3D world. They can even click a button on it and record moments in 3D to relive over and over again as if they’re right there in the memory. It will be as if they have their own real life Harry Potter style Pensieve to fall back into their memories. If we had this when I was a kid, I could take my children back in time and have them on the couch with me and my friends when Scotty Thurman hit that rainbow three against Duke to win the national title. It’s the closest thing to a time machine that we may ever have.”

Although we don’t share his interest in watching Scotty Thurman’s career highlight, we get it. Who wouldn't?

And his conclusion in this piece is exactly on target: adapt or die. The ACC basically fell behind on the Internet. It shouldn’t make that same mistake again. Because even if this particular device fails, the technology is not going away. But a million opportunities certainly will. And they won’t be coming back.