A new augmented reality experience at the AT&T Stadium has fans posing for photos with their favorite Dallas cowboys – and AT&T says there will be more tricks soon.
At this point it is clear that people are going to make desperate efforts to keep themselves cool on social media. For this reason, our cities have been almost overflowing with “Instagram experiences” in recent years.
But as cool as it is to pose for a photo in a piece of art created just for that purpose, there is still something special about your feed showing a picture of you posing next to a real celebrity, isn’t it true? ? You just can’t fake this funk.
Or wait: can you? That’s the question at the heart of the newest fan experience at AT&T Stadium, home of the Dallas Cowboys, and that’s what makes it so cool.
During the preseason NFL games held there earlier this year, AT&T unveiled a series of eight interactive screens installed on the east court of the Arlington Football Stadium concourse near Entrance B. This combined real-time photo booth technology with augmented reality video overlays with free-to-use screens, fans can pose for realistic photos with five Dallas Cowboys players of their choice from a pool of eight player options. It’s an objectively radical idea that skilfully explains how a video of fans interacting with this activation at the Cowboys’ regular season opener versus the New York Giants quickly went viral and garnered more than 12 million views on Twitter.
Last week, after this video was quickly distributed, the Cowboys advertising team invited media outlets to the stadium to personally test the feature. We have accepted this offer. Here’s a first person clip that shows exactly what the experience is like:
The process begins with videos of players waving potential passers-by to interact with it.
Upon touching the screen, users are asked to select five players from a collection that includes broad receiver Amari Cooper, security guard Zack Martin, quarterback Dak Prescott, center Travis Frederick, Ezekiel Elliott, linebacker Leighton Vander Esch, and linebacker Jaylon Smith owned and broad receiver Randall Cobb.
As the user makes each of their five selections, the players they select are displayed on the right side of the screen. Once five players have been selected, the user clicks “Submit” and is instructed to begin posing. At this point, videos of the players walking on the screen around the user begin and the user is given a handful of seconds to pose around them by directing their attention to a camera on the right side of the setup. Once the screen is done, it will turn white to illuminate the image with floodlights, which will then be captured instantly. The players then exit the screen and the user is shown the image.
In the final step, the user accepts a user agreement and enters either their cell phone number or email address to receive a copy of the image that can be downloaded or shared on social media.
The entire process takes about 60 seconds.
The positions of the players should change depending on the order and combination in which they were selected. As the photo at the top of this post shows, we weren’t very lucky to get Prescott to move. According to AT&T representatives, however, each player available at the booth has three different poses and positions, each lasting 30 minutes to an hour, to film in front of a green screen in the off-season.
This experience, leveraging augmented reality as well as the stadium’s 5G network, is the latest AT&T installed extension to the stadium that bears the name of the Dallas-based telecommunications giant. It will become part of a large video board that the company installed over the eastern end zone of the soccer field in 2017, replacing the installations of “living photos” that previously stood where the AR photo booths are now.
Plans for these photo booths began in December 2018 when AT&T committed to installing its 5G network in the stadium and looking for ways to highlight the nationwide system that was still in use.
Additional activations combining AR technology and 5G capabilities will roll out across the stadium over the course of the 2019 NFL season. This includes three AR features only available on 5G-enabled Samsung mobile devices – a game users can play on their screens, controlling robots that appear on the field in real time. This is one area where users can interact with videos of players appearing on their phone screens (think Pokémon GO) and another video-based experience exclusive to the court outside of which users have videos on their phones Seeing (and recording) players “above the structure of the stadium” and crashing through boards – similar to Godzilla, “says Christine Cage, senior marketing manager with sponsorship and experience marketing at AT&T.
It is possible that the stadium will offer even more experiences this year. In the meantime, according to Bill Moseley, AT&T director of experimental marketing, it is more than likely that similar installations – maybe with TV shows or movie actors? – will be added to the $ 100 million dollar AT&T Discovery Center still under construction in downtown Dallas, some of which will debut this winter.
“We are a technology company,” says Moseley. “We will not rest on our laurels. We will always try to make the experience better. And as our technology gets better, the experience should get better. ”