This week Sports Entertainment Network announced SEN Stadium, an in-stadium app that offers a live commentary listening experience with zero latency.
The serviced debuts at the Australia VS South Africa five-day test at the SCG all week.
Previously, fans had to bring an old-school AM/FM radio to the stadium or settle for watching the game with no commentary. Why? If fans were to listen to commentary via their smartphone apps, there was always some amount of delay between the live action on the ground and the broadcast – making the experience unworkable.
A buggy start
Prior to lunch, the service was faulty. I tried it on my iPhone 14 and well as iPad Pro, but both had the same bugs, it would play the broadcast for about a minute before cutting out.
Each time I rebooted the app it would start to work again, only to cut out shortly after.
Troubleshooting proved it was the service at fault, with the other broadcasts and the WiFi working fine.
Perfect form after lunch!
After play returned following the main break, SEN Stadium began to work brilliantly!
Listening to commentary in real-time with my AirPod Pro 2’s was an incredible experience at the ground. No more shitty headphones that I need to turn up way too loud from an AM/FM radio.
It was a real-time experience too, I could hear the bat being tapped via the broadcast with almost precision to all the action on the ground.
A highly targeted advertising opportunity?
I can’t imagine more than 10% of people at the stadium would use the service. It’s pretty anti-social to listen to commentary while you’re at the ground with friends, and most people go to games with friends and family.
So assuming a best-case scenario of 10% of people using the service at a sold out SCG, it would mean approx 3,000 people would be using SEN Stadium at the game.
Hardly an audience size tier one advertisers would bother with, and it explains why it appeared to be the same ads on SEN Stadium as their regular radio broadcast.
However, perhaps there could be a new commercial product sold on this service. Maybe something promoting local businesses, hotels, events and more – targeted purely at the fans attending the stadium.
This approach would no doubt require a whole new sales strategy, and maybe the opportunity will never be big enough – however, I do like the idea of a more relevant commercial experience if one was to eventuate in the future.
Congratulations SEN, with this service you have changed the live sports experience in Australia forever.